Shop Owners at the popular Bishop Okoye Street and other parts of Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital may soon have a sigh of relief following the clampdown by the Police on hoodlums collecting illegal levy known as 'matching ground'.
National Network learnt that the hoodlums were caught red handed and arrested by a combined team of plain cloth detectives from the Nkpolu Divisional Police Headquarters, Mile 3 Diobu and officers from the Inspector General of Police (IGP)'s monitoring Unit at Bishop Okoye Street last Saturday when they were collecting 'matching ground'.
An eyewitness who craved for anonymity told our reporter that the detectives posed like customers who came to buy goods at the place. The source revealed that the hoodlums who did not know that they were talking to Police men, began to make their illicit demand which backfired as they were promptly arrested.
We further learnt that three other suspects were arrested while collecting 'matching ground' fee at an illegal market at Ojoto and Azikiwe Street, Mile 2 Diobu, by undercover Police officers.
A relative to one of the arrested suspects confirmed the arrest of his brother.
He told our reporter that officers from the IGP's monitoring unit arrested his brother on allegation of collecting 'matching ground', claiming that his brother was innocent as he was not among hoodlums involved in the crime.
The spokesperson of the Rivers State Police Command, Deputy DSP Nnamdi Omoni was yet to react to enquiries on the arrest as at press time.
It would be recalled that collection of 'matching ground' fee led to a recent war between two cult groups in Diobu which allegedly claimed at least four lives.