WARRI, Nigeria — The Nigerian army says it has killed a gang leader who was accused of planning a New Year’s Day massacre that left 17 people dead.

Army spokesman Col. Aminu Iliyasu says that Prince Igwedibia — popularly known as Don Wani or Don Waney — was killed Saturday evening, along with two of his lieutenants. The suspects were killed during a heavy gunbattle with security officers in Enugu state in eastern Nigeria.

Igwedibia had being accused of killing dozens of people including police officers, ambushing security patrol teams and kidnapping scores of others for ransom.

The Rivers state governor had granted Igwedibia and his group amnesty about a year ago in exchange for his weapons. But the group later backed out of the deal and again took up arms.

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