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Terror Alert: Kuje Prison Escapee Arrested Within Confines Of US Embassy


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An inmate of the Kuje Medium Custodial Centre who escaped among over 800 others during an attack on the facility by a group of terrorists on Tuesday, July 5, was arrested within the precincts of the United States Embassy in Abuja, triggering security concerns among members of the diplomatic community.

Joshua John, aged 32, was reportedly picked up by Eagle-eyed security operatives at about 10.30pm on Thursday, October 20, while loitering around the US Embassy in the Central Business District of Abuja.

Upon interrogation, he was said to have escaped from the Kuje Custodial Centre during the recent attack on the facility but the police had yet to establish the circumstances of his presence around the US Embassy at the time of his arrest, according to a security source who does not want his name mentioned.

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It was further learnt that a Deputy Superintendent of Police and Unit Commander at the Squadron No. 44 of the Police Mobile Force, PMF, simply identified as DSP Friday on special duty at the US Embassy took the suspect the CPS Division of the Federal Capital Territory, FCT Police Command for custody.

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Crack detectives at the police command headquarters have commenced discreet investigation on the suspect, Scudnews learnt on Monday, October 24.

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The development came barely two days before the US Embassy raised the red flag on elevated risk of terror attacks in Nigeria, particularly in the nation’s capital on Sunday, October 23.  

Recall that on July 5, the Boko Haram breakaway faction Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) led a successful attack on a well-secured prison in Nigeria’s capital, Abuja. The group shot its way into the Kuje Medium Security Custodial Centre after overpowering security guards in a well-coordinated assault.

The Government said 879 detainees escaped, including all 68 imprisoned Boko Haram members. About half the escapees were recaptured, one confirmed to be from the violent extremist group.

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The attackers may have responded to Islamic State’s (ISIS) call in April to free jailed fighters. Detained Ansaru (an al-Qaeda affiliate in Nigeria) members were also believed to have escaped.

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