A family has been hospitalized outside the country after two cooks from Benin Republic, Victor Hounkpe and David Amusu, allegedly poisoned their meal in the Lekki area of Lagos State.
The employers identified as Mr. Nwogu Chinaka, and his wife, Omowunmi, the security guards and other domestic workers reportedly became unconscious after eating the poisoned meal.
It was learnt that on Wednesday, April 22, 2015 Hounkpe, prepared a vegetable soup for the family’s dinner around 5 pm and minutes after consumption, the man of the house developed a severe stomach ache and collapsed, while his wife rushed him to a nearby hospital.
Subsequently, Omowunmi also had severe stomach ache, became unconscious and fell at the gate of the hospital and was taken into the same hospital for treatment alongside her husband.
The two cooks reportedly took to their heels after two security guards in the compound were later taken to the hospital.
According to Punch, the police said the couple later wrote a petition to the Commissioner of Police, Kayode Aderanti, on the matter, and after investigation by the Department of Criminal Investigation, Yaba, the runaway cooks were arrested.
In a confessional statement, 34-year-old Hounkpe disclosed how he put a substance in the family’s soup to make everybody fall asleep so they would easily steal some gold and other valuables from the house.
He said, “I am from the Benin Republic. I came to Nigeria in 2007. I have always worked as a cook in Lagos. David was the agent who brought me to the couples’ house. He was the one who gave me the substance to put inside the soup. He told me the substance was a sleeping pill. The plan was that everyone would fall asleep.
“They wanted to steal gold and other valuables. I put the substance inside the vegetable soup. It was a powdery substance. I had worked with them for about a month. The couple did not offend us. They were to pay me N50,000 monthly. We just wanted them to sleep off. I ran to the Ogudu area after the incident to pick up another job. That was where I was arrested.”
On his own part, 33-year-old Amusu said, “I was a former cook in the house. I was the one who brought Victor (Hounkpe). On the fateful day, when Victor finished cooking the soup, he called me to say the job had been done. But then, we learnt that the couple was rushed to a hospital after falling unconscious. So, we fled the area.”
The police revealed that the gang of robbers intended to use Hounkpe as an insider for an easier operation.
While parading the suspects, the state police commissioner, Aderanti, advised residents of Lagos to always do background checks on people employed into their homes and offices.
He said, “They have both confessed to the crime. The couple has been flown abroad for treatment. I want the public to always be careful about the people they bring into their homes. In Lagos, there is no place for criminals to hide.”