Eleven suspected cultists arrested by the police in Cross River State were arraigned before a Calabar Magistrate Court on Monday.
The suspected cultists, including nine males and two females, were arrested on Friday during an initiation ceremony at Edem Edet Street, off Bishop Moynagh Avenue in Calabar, the Cross River State capital.
According to the Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Irene Ugbo, the suspects were arrested by operatives of the Special Anti-robbery Squad (SARS) following human and technical intelligence.
“Items recovered from them include talking drums, a wooden gong, two kegs of concoctions and a bottle of Gordon drink,” she said.
The defendants pleaded not guilty to all three charges against them before Mrs Glory Edu of the Calabar Magistrate Court 3.
Following their pleas, Mrs Edu granted them bail in the sum of 300,000 each with a surety in like sum, who must be a civil servant from grade level six and above and resident in Calabar.
Mrs Edu noted that bail was free in her court. She urged the defendants to report any form of extortion to her, adding that they were free to go once they met the bail conditions.
The Cross River State Commissioner of Police, Mr Abdulkadir Jimoh, also warned members of the public to desist from participating in cult-related activities in the state.
“Members of any cult groups or anyone having an intention to engage in cult-related activities should desist from such to avoid been neutralize in the ongoing Operation Murky Water,” he said.
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