Imposter LASTMA Officer Admits to Earning N35,000 Daily

Suspect Extorted Thousands from Motorists Daily by Impersonating LASTMA

The Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) has apprehended a suspected serial impostor pretending to be a traffic officer from the agency. Omotutu Bamidele, a 55-year-old man, was caught in the Ikoyi area of Lagos State.

Imposter LASTMA Officer Admits to Earning N35,000 Daily

In a statement released by LASTMA on Sunday, the suspect, originally from Atijere Town in Ondo State, confessed that he and his accomplices still at large made an average of N35,000 daily by extorting money from motorists. Bamidele admitted to impersonating the agency by wearing a reflective jacket and demanding money from drivers, especially private car owners, across various parts of the state.

According to the statement, Bamidele said, “Private car owners caught dropping someone off at any undesignated bus stop had to pay between N15,000 to N20,000, while those caught driving against traffic (One-way) paid a minimum of N35,000.”

Adebayo Taofiq, the Director of the Public Affairs Department of LASTMA, cited the General Manager, Bolaji Oreagba, confirming the suspect’s arrest at Olu Holloway Road by Alfred Rewane area of Ikoyi. The agency’s Monitoring/Surveillance team, led by Ashafa Moyosore (Zonal Head), carried out the operation in response to complaints received via LASTMA hotlines and social media handles from the motoring public, including Obinna Kingsley and Adewusi Adebola.

Oreagba stated that the investigation revealed the arrested suspect had been extorting large sums of money from motorists for various traffic offenses, such as seat-belt violations, obstructions, illegal overtaking, and one-way driving at multiple locations around Lagos Island. He expressed disappointment at the complaints from road users, especially motorists, regarding the activities of these fraudulent individuals who impersonate traffic officers and extort money.

The LASTMA boss urged the public to be cautious of fake traffic officers and emphasized that the agency adheres to a cashless policy. Violators caught by the agency are issued a ‘Referral Notice’ and charged in court. Oreagba warned the motoring public against bribing traffic officers, as both the giver and taker are liable under the law.

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