The operatives of the Lagos State Police Command have apprehended a couple for allegedly operating a baby factory.
The couple – Adeola and Binta Adebayo – was arrested on Sunday, February 4, 2018, between 6:10 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. by operatives of the Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad (FSARS) in Ikeja, Lagos Mainland, following a tip-off from a journalist.
According to the State Police Commissioner, Edgal Imohimi, the suspects usually harboured young pregnant women at their residence located at No 1, Treasure Palace Close, off Hand of Fair Bus Stop, Ikotun-Igando Road.
Imohimi said the suspects usually sold the children after the young women had been delivered of the babies without the mothers’ consent.
Commenting on the incident, the Police boss said: “They harboured young pregnant girls until they are delivered of their babies after which these babies are taken from them and sold without the consent of the young mothers.
“During the raid, three young women were rescued. They were – Favour Osikwemeh, 19, (six months pregnant), Precious Emmanuel, 27, (seven months pregnant), and Onome Oputi, 25, (nine months pregnant).
“The victims will be handed over to National Agency for the Prohibition in Persons (NAPTIP) for care while the couple will be handed over for possible prosecution.”
During interrogation, one of the rescued ladies, Osikwemeh said a friend of hers, Lepa, introduced her to the place.
“I was not told it is a baby factory. I was staying with my friend called Lepa when she told me that her place is too small and offered to take me where I will be delivered of my child.
“I have been there since December last year. The woman told my mum that I am working with her but we didn’t negotiate about payment for my child,” she said.
However, during interrogation, the couple denied the allegation, insisting that they were only assisting the women, who in turn helped them with their business.
Binta, who also gave her name as Nene Okoro, claimed that one of the three women was her daughter-in-law, who has lived with them for over four years.
She said: “We are not running any baby factory. I have never sold any baby. Two of the three women only help me with my business. I sell wholesale drinks and they assist me.
“The other woman is my daughter-in-law, who has been living with us for over four years. If I sold babies, how come I didn’t sell my two grandchildren she had earlier.
“I believe some neighbours we have a land dispute with are trying to frame my husband and I. I am from Abia State but my husband is Yoruba. We are innocent.”