For over a decade, notorious land-grabber Kamorudeen Lamina, allegedly unleashed constant terror on the residents of 35 communities of Lagos and Ogun. He was like the proverbial demon that pierced through the hearts of his victims with a hot iron. His presence left the trail of blood, sorrow, gnashing of the teeth and torment for those who encountered him.
“Sir K Oluwo,” as he is popularly called, assumed the status of a tin god and takes no prisoners. No one, including real estate developers, was spared his menace. He crushed those who dared resist him with lethal force, sending them crashing into the abyss untimely. Princes and residents kissed the dust resisting him while obas and baales swallowed their pride and surrendered their terrestrial inheritance to avoid premature reunion with their ancestors.
Narrating their ordeals in the hands of Lamina, Chief Jimoh Adelaja, the Balogun of Orile Odo Onosa in Ikorodu area of Lagos State, said the “criminal land-grabber” had been terrorising them since 2008.
“He unlawfully sold 445 acres of our land in Lagos. The case is with Justice Akapo in Ikorodu. When we got a judgement against him concerning one of our lands in an Ijebu area of Ogun State, Lamina still went to the land to destroy our crops,” he said.
The Baale further said they petitioned the then Ogun State police commissioner who handed the case over to one Inspector Adebayo in Odogbolu.
“Adebayo claimed he investigated the matter. But, at the end of the day, he frustrated the case after collecting bribes from Lamina and company,” he added.
Not long after the police allegedly swept the matter under the carpet, their men fell victim to Lamina’s barbarism in 2016 when police from Area 10 Abuja, acting on a petition, came to Lagos to arrest him and his boys.
“When police showed up, Lamina’s thugs beat the officers, seized their teargas canisters, their identity cards, four of their phones and other items. They injured the officers. At the end of the day, Lamina used his money and influence to placate the police,” the baale said.
WATCH: Ogun communities protest against notorious land-grabber Kamorudeen Lamina
According to him, they wrote the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). But Lamina used the same police to thwart the investigation.
“When they started investigating the case, Lamina and his cohorts used one Inspector Lati to arrest me and our youths over fictitious charges of rape and armed robbery.” The baale said the case is still at the High Court in Ikeja, Lagos, before Justice Raliatu Adebiyi.
Aside from residents, several real estate developing companies have also lost hundreds of hectares of land worth billions of naira to the nefarious activities of Sir K. The most affected was Planet Property Limited that lost 100 acres of land including buildings (under construction) worth billions of naira.
The Realm News gathered that the director of Planet Property was beaten and chased out of the land by Lamina and his gangs despite collecting millions from them and issuing a receipt.
“To stop him from further sale of our land, we gave him the N2.1 million he demanded from us. But he continued the sale. We cannot enter our land again. We were beaten by Lamina’s boys even with our court judgment,” the Planet Property boss said.
Like lords in a captured territory, “Lamina’s boys” parade conquered suburbs in Ogun and Lagos with guns and live ammunitions harassing, chasing away contractors from their lawfully acquired sites, maiming and killing those who put up a resistance in broad daylight, and with impunity.
Like a man above the law, Lamina is said to have gotten away with murder multiple times but his alleged decision to murder a prince and two others did not exactly turn out as he might have anticipated. While the families of his said victims mourn their losses, Lamina’s apparent plan to escape justice again seems to have finally hit a brick wall.
In 2011, a surveyor, Prince Akeem Odegbaro and two others, Fatai Adeleye and Adebisi Adelakun were gruesomely hacked to death. Killer thugs allegedly under the orders of Lamina dumped Prince Odegbaro’s naked mutilated remains on a landed property where Lamina was reportedly working.
Some images of the corpse seen by The Realm News are so gory we decided not to publish them.
Trouble was said to have started when Lamina, without authorisation, sold land he was asked to survey. We gathered that the land-owners, Chief Kehinde Solarin, Wonpori descendant family of Ologbun Likosi, Shagamu, Ogun State, felt embarrassed and contacted their lawyers to revoke their agreement with Lamina.
The late Odegbaro was an apprentice surveyor working with Kaatson & Associates, the firm that was contracted to take over from Lamina after he allegedly grabbed and sold the land.
“When Akeem and eight other workers began work at the site, Lamina’s thugs attacked them and killed three of them,” a director at Kaatson & Associates told The Realm News.
“Police found his naked body abandoned in a dungeon,” he added.
Lamina was said to have absconded after the alleged killings but was trailed by the police. However, four of his boys were not so elusive as they were apprehended and charged with murder, illegal possession of firearms, and conspiracy. They were remanded in Sagamu Prison.
However, on January 2, 2013, two of the suspects, one Segun Adebayo and another whose name we could not ascertain escaped during the Sagamu jailbreak that many believed was masterminded by Lamina. They are still at large but the remaining two suspects are in Shagamu Prison awaiting trials.
While reportedly hiding from the Ogun State Police, Lamina was said to have written to police officers of the Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad (F-SARS) in Adeniji Adele, Lagos to take over the case.
“He has some senior police officers on his payroll. So, his plan was to use them to kill the case. But we quickly petitioned the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) who ordered a monitoring team from Abuja to work with Ogun police and get to the bottom of the case,” our source from Kaatson & Associates said.
While this was ongoing, Lamina, The Realm News learnt, approached the Federal High Court presided over by Justice Ajumogobia and filed for the violation of his fundamental human rights and to also obtain a court injunction barring the police from arresting and investigating him.
According to the director, “Lamina dragged our company and the entire police force to court. We enlisted the services of Femi Falana’s chambers to counter him.
“When the court found out that it was a land-grab case involving multiple murders, it was transferred to the Ogun State High Court where it was heard for about two years.”
The court ruled against him in 2015 and held that the police had the power to arrest, investigate and prosecute him.
“We wrote the police to inform them of the decision,” the director continued. “But Lamina again ran to the Federal High Court in Ikoyi, Lagos and filed similar charges against us and the police. We went through that until we got a judgement against him again in 2017-18. He then disappeared again and we started looking for him.”
The director said they have two Federal High Court judgements against him but maintained that enforcement has been impossible because of his (Lamina’s) connection with senior police officers.
Following several petitions by victims alleging multiple murders, Lamina was finally arrested on the instructions of IGP Mohammed Adamu in July 2019.
“We took his matter to the police in Abuja after we discovered that he may have bought all the police stations in Lagos and Ogun. Whenever we reported him to the police authorities in these states, they would acknowledge our complaints but fail to act. They even failed to act on the several court orders on Lamina,” Chief Jimoh Adelaja told us.
However, after spending 16 days in custody, Lamina was secretly released. Sources say his godfather used his influence with the Emir of Nasawara to persuade the police.
But his dubious freedom was, however, short-lived as the Ministry of Justice in Ogun State issued a directive to the police commissioner and the IGP to arrest him for immediate arraignment on pending murder cases – one of them the gruesome killing of Prince Odegbaro.
Lamina was rearrested on Tuesday, August 20, 2019, and was subsequently remanded in the prison custody by the Sagamu Chief Magistrate Court, Ogun State on a four-count charge of conspiracy to murder, murder, unlawful possession of firearms and armed robbery in suit number MSH/289c/2019.
But Chief Jimoh Adelaja decried the “special treatment” given to the said fugitive by the police to give credence to the special relationship allegation between Lamina and law enforcement officers.
“Security officials conveyed him to jail in a luxurious vehicle with no number plate and not in the prison vehicle available at the court premises. The prison vehicle was going ahead of the expensive ride where Lamina sat like a king, while the police vehicle was at the rear,” he said.
The chief said he tried to take pictures of this strange arrangement outside the court premises, “but Lamina screamed that I wanted to post his pictures to social media.”
“Armed police officers chased us and warned us not to take pictures. Everyone fled to safety,” he added.
“Lamina lost all his cases against law enforcement but his police friends could not arrest him because he gives them money and takes care of them,” another of Lamina’s victim said.
The Realm News gathered that even in prison, Lamina is still bragging and threatening to kill and amputate everybody when he is released.
“I will go and bribe them at the DPP (Department of Public Prosecution) office so they will declare me innocent. I have the contacts of the Ogun State governor and the Attorney-General. This is not the first time I am getting away with murder charges. They will set me free,” Lamina was quoted to have boasted.
His reported arrogance may not be unconnected with the apparent failure of prosecutors to put him away before now.
When we contacted the Ogun State Police Public Relation Officer (PPRO), Abimbola Oyeyemi, he said Lamina was arrested because he had a series of cases over which police had been looking for him.
He said the director of public prosecution also recently reported him to the police and that was why the police quickly hunted, arrested and charged him to court.
On why it took the police so long to arrest and prosecute Lamina, the PPRO said it was because most of the court injunctions against him were probably from Lagos.
“If there is a court injunction directing the police to take a certain action, that injunction has to be served on the police,” he said.
When we confronted him with the allegation of complicity levelled against the police in Lamina’s alleged criminality by the Ikorodu chief, Oyeyemi dismissed it as “beer parlour gossip”.
His words: “How can somebody say police are in his (Lamina’s) pockets? Is he the one paying police salary? Is anybody above the law? Even though he said he went through Abuja, was it not the same police in Ogun that got Lamina arrested? Even if police officers from Abuja were the ones who made the arrest, it is still the same Nigeria Police.”
On why there was no press release from the police to publicise Lamina’s arrest, Oyeyemi said his case was not a prominent one that would require a press statement.
“We just performed the normal police duty of arresting him and charging him to court. He is like every other person who committed an offence,” he said.
Efforts to contact Lamina’s alleged godfather for comments on this story were not successful. But Lamina’s aides said in the past that their boss was neither a land-grabber nor a murderer.
Lamina’s alleged victims and survivors would hope prosecutors can rubbish such defence in the court of law.