Seifa Gbereke: Nigeria oil pipeline bomb suspect arrested

Nigeria said on Saturday it had arrested the leader of a gang responsible for a series of attacks on oil installations in the Niger Delta region.

Seifa Gbereke, also known as General Cairo, is also suspected of stealing crude from pipelines, a common practice that costs the country roughly $5 billion a year, according to Agence France-Presse.

"We've been on the trail of General Cairo for five months," Lieutenant Colonel Oyeama Nwachukwu, spokesman for the military's regional Joint Task Force (JTF), told AFP. "It is a very significant development, considering the fact that he's been terrorizing the entire Delta region."

The military paraded Gbereke in front of the media, where he confessed to the crimes, reported Reuters. There was no independent confirmation of his story told while in custody.

"He led a gang of eight to destroy Agip pipelines and Shell ones around various communities," Nwachukwu said to Reuters.

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Gbereke, said to be 25, is accused of planning and carrying out bombings on pipelines and wells in the three Nigerian states with the largest crude deposits: Bayelsa, Delta and Rivers, according to AFP. He and seven associates also allegedly stole large amounts of oil to fund criminal activity.

AFP also reported that Nigeria is the world's eighth largest oil producer and has recently been producing between 2 and 2.4 million barrels per day.