One Mr Williams Bernard, reportedly specialized in luring young ladies to sexually abuse them and thereafter extort them, has been arrested by the Lagos State police command.
Naija News understands that the self-acclaimed prophet met his Waterloo after he and his accomplice had raped a young girl, 19, and started using photographs secretly taken at the scene to blackmail her.
Findings revealed that Benard usually goes on social media to play smart on young ladies searching for a life partner by making them believe in him and thereby begin to exploit them.
Naija News understands that Benard, who operated as Evans Joris on Facebook was arrested by the Isheri-Oshun Police Station, where he and a member of his syndicate are being interrogated.
It was gathered that the suspect usually sends friend requests to his female victims on social media, offer them business proposal or marriage promises and along the way earn the victim’s trust, after which he would invite them to a hotel room where he will rape and secretly take photographs of them together.
The police command revealed further that Bernad after raping him victims would go on to threaten to post the photos on social media if they raise any alarm. Also, he and his accomplices will use the same nude photographs to begin to blackmail their victims to get money from them.
However, the 19-year-old girl, Glory, who happens to be Bernad and his gang member’s last victim narrated her awful experience with the suspects.
She said; “I live at Ikotun area of Lagos. I met Williams Benard on social media. He said he was a tiller and a prophet. We were chatting on Facebook until he asked me to become his lover and I declined the proposal and warned him to stop chatting with me. I eventually blocked him on my Facebook. A few days later, a man sent me a friend request from the USA and I accepted his request, we started chatting. Few days after we became friends, the man told me that he would like to marry me and I was so happy, but I told the man that I should be 20 before the marriage.”
Speaking about promises made to her by the suspect she said; “One day, the man said he would send me an iPhone and laptop so that I can communicate effectively with him. He later sent a phone number of the person that I should collect the items from. When I dialled the number, it happened to be that of Williams Benard whom I had warned to stay away from me. On phone, he described our reunion as a coincidence and that his blood brother informed him that he has proposed to marry me. He gave me an appointment in a hotel to meet him for the items. When I arrived the hotel, Benard said he was shocked that the courier service that was bringing the items had returned it to Abuja and that he needed N20,000 to send to the courier service to enable them to bring the goods to Lagos.”
“I took Benard to my aunt who gave him the money. He invited me to have a meeting in the hotel to have some discussion. I did not suspect anything as I thought he was genuine. When I arrived the hotel room, he started shouting and asking why I decided to tarnish his name before his elder brother, as I was asking what he meant, he brought out a bottle and threatened to kill me if I did not cooperate with him. He commanded me to remove my clothes or risk being stabbed to death.
She revealed further, “He raped me and took my nude photographs and threatened to upload it on the social media if I dare tell my aunt, relatives and the police about it. That was how he turned me to a sex slave. Any time he needed me, he would tell me stories that someone mistakenly saw my nude photograph and wanted to post it on social media. I would run to him and he would show me somebody and after sleeping with me, he would ask the person to have sex with me as well.
“The first time, the person he invited refused to sleep with me but promised not to upload the photograph. The second time he invited another person and told me the same story that the person wanted to upload my nude photographs on social media. It was on a Sunday, the two of them slept with me till Monday morning. Because I did not go back home that Sunday, my aunt raised the alarm and other relatives came and the case of the missing person was lodged at the police station. The police advised my family to wait for 24 hours to see if I would come back home.
“When I came home on Monday morning, my family members had gathered and started asking questions, but initially, I was scared to spill the beans because I was afraid of their threat. It was when one of my brothers threatened to beat me up if I did not talk that I opened up.”
On his part, the spokesperson of the state police command, Bala Elkana, while reacting to the incident noted that the command is currently carrying out an investigation to determine and arrest other members of the gang.
Adding that they would all be made to face the law as the command will charge them to court after investigations are completed.