Two civilians were on Tuesday kidnapped after an ambush by a group of pirates along Degema waterways in the Degema Local Government Areas of Rivers State.
The pirates, who were in two gunboats, had opened fire on another boat said to be carrying some important personalities.
It was gathered that while three of the four policemen escorting the VIPs had jumped into the water and swam to safety, the fourth policeman, who apparently was unable to swim, was beaten and dumped in the river, while his gun was taken away.
A security source said apart from the gun that was taken away by the hoodlums, three other AK-47 rifles belonging to the police got missing in the sea.
It was learnt that the policemen were from the Special Protective Unit in Benin, Edo State while the incident occurred between Bakana and Degema communities in Rivers State.
The pirates, according to the source, left with one rifle and two civilians after they were sure that nobody was present within the scene to attack them.
“The pirates were about 12 in number and they opened fire as soon as they got close to the police from an unexpected angle. The policemen returned fore for fire immediately. But the boat driver abandoned the boat and jumped into the river,” the security source added.
Punch correspondent gathered that the policemen could not fight because the driver of the boat conveying the policemen and the two VIPs abandoned the vehicle and jumped into the river.
It was learnt that the police had employed sea divers within the place the incident happened to help in finding the missing rifles with their serial numbers as 52-2404262, 1999 AGC 0231, 52-2518603 and 1999AGB1245.