Nigerian gunmen kill triumphant footballer

YENAGOA, Nigeria - The captain of Bayelsa United was killed by armed robbers hours after he helped his team win Nigeria's Premier League, a club official said on Monday. Abiel Tabor, 24, was shot late on Sunday near the town of Oleh, in southern Nigeria's Delta state, when he tried to drive away from the gunmen. Tabor was travelling with his younger brother and two others to visit his family after Bayelsa clinched the title with a 2-2 draw against Warri Wolves. "We were told he was (killed) by the armed robbers close to Warri," said Bayelsa's assistant chairman Ebi Ayah. Violent crime has surged in the Niger Delta since militants, who say they are fighting for a fairer share of the region's natural resources, launched a campaign of sabotage against the oil industry three years ago. Criminal gangs have taken advantage of the breakdown in law and order, carrying out kidnappings for ransom, armed robberies and vehicle hijackings which have left the region's residents living in a state of permanent insecurity.