Twenty-nine men surrendered to police in relation to an armed robbery and two murders that took place on Sunday, September 3 in Aroma, Central province.
Central Provincial Police Commander Chief Inspector Laimo Asi, who was with his officers on Wednesday, September 6, with the support of three ward councillors from Egala`auna, Maopa and Gaivakala, did a successful operation that led to the surrender of the 29 suspects.
PPC Asi said the situation along the Aroma Coast has been tense since Sunday when the robbery and murders took place. He said police units were dispatched to the crime scene to raise awareness and warned the people not to take the law into their own hands but to bring those suspects involved to police.
He said whilst police awareness and investigations were underway, he had appealed to the three Councilors to get the villagers to identify and bring in the suspects.
“I was present at Egala`auna where the 27 suspects of the two murders surrendered to police plus two suspects of the robbery. The 27 suspects are from Egala`auna who went in a group and fought with the five-armed criminals, and killed two while three escaped. Two of the three who escaped surrendered to the police while one is still on the run,” PPC Asi added.
According to police reports the incident happened in the morning of Sunday, September 03, when five armed men from Maopa were in the process of robbing a Chinese Shop at Egala`auna villager when two of the robbers were killed while three escaped.
Maopa villagers, after learning of the two criminals’ deaths, ransacked the store, wounded the Chinese and burnt down the store. Threats were also issued to the Egala`auna people.
Quick intervention from NCD/Central Commander Anthony Wagambie and PPC Asi prevented the situation from getting out of hand. A meeting was held in Port Moresby with the elites from Aroma whilst police units were dispatched to the location to contain the situation.
PPC Asi was pleased with the outcome of the gathering and the surrender of the 29 suspects who are now in police custody.
He said the situation is now calm and the people have been warned not to take the law into their own hands because those allegedly involved are now in police custody. He said police would also investigate the arson and other offence committed in relation to the first incident.
PPC Asi further added that a shotgun that was used in the robbery was also surrendered to him during the awareness on Wednesday.