Illegal Detention: Lawyers Petition IGP Over Demand For N2m Bribe For Bail

Inspector General of Police, Usman Akali

By Frank Oshanugor

A team of lawyers led by Chief A.G. Giwa-Amu Chacole & Darda Chambers, Lagos has petitioned the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Usman Alkali Baba over what they called corruption, extortion, conspiracy to set up false accusation and illegal detention of their clients with a demand for N2million bribe by the police to secure their bail.

In a petition dated 25th October, 2021 signed by Chief A.G. Giwa-Amu Esq (copy of which is available to *AtlanticNewsonline ), the lawyers who are acting as solicitors to Rockston Dredging and Allied Works Limited said that on the 22nd October, 2021, one police Inspector Lucas with a team of five mobile policemen violently raided Ilemere Community at Ibeshe in Ikorodu Local Government Area of Lagos alleging to be on police investigation.

The said Inspector Lucas had reportedly gone to the dredging site of Rockston at Ilemere with a list of purported suspects and when none of the persons on the wanted list could not be found, Lucas and his team proceeded to arrest innocent workers on the dredging site including Messrs Wangkansai and Zhujunstan both Chinese nationals who could not speak English language.

The petitioners stated that upon hearing of the illegal arrest of innocent staff of their client’s company; as solicitors they were instructed to proceed to engage the said Inspector Lucas who was still at Ikorodu at the time.

Sequel to this instruction, the team led by Chief A.G. Giwa-Amu, Barristers Monday Uleyo and Joseph Amodu as lawyers met with Inspector Lucas and his team at the Nigeria Police station, Ipakodo near Nigeria Ports Authority, Ikorodu Lagos.

The lead solicitor; Chief Giwa-Amu and one Mr. Thompson were later shown a list of the so called wanted persons and Giwa-Amu pointedly told the police inspector that none of the persons on the list was amongst those arrested and that they should be released.

According to the petitioners, the said Inspector Lucas told Chief Giwa-Amu in the presence of Mr. Thompson, Barristers Uleyo and Amodu that he (Inspector Lucas) would not release any of the arrested persons, though their names were not on his list of suspects as he (Lucas) must make returns to his boss, the Assistant Inspector General (AIG) of Police who in his words is going to be substantive IGP very soon. You people need to meet him; he is the future IGP.”

In turn Chief Giwa-Amu had told Inspector Lucas that his action in arresting innocent persons was designed to set false allegation to enable him (Lucas) extort money from the Chinese national and other Nigerian citizens unlawfully arrested and detained.

Not mindful of the illegality of their action, Inspector Lucas and the team of mobile policemen forcefully and roughly took the persons arrested into a waiting Faragon Volkswagen Transit Bus and took them to his office purportedly designated as “PA to the AIG Alagbon office” which is headed by police detective ASP Yusuf and ACP Danko of the office of the AIG Force Criminal Investigation Department Annex Alagbon, Lagos.

The petition stated further that due to the ill-health of Mr. Thompson at the premise of Nigeria Police Station, at Owutu Ipakodo, Chief Giwa-Amu, Monday Uleyo and John Amodu firmly disagreed against his being taken forcefully by Inspector Lucas and his gang of mobile policeman.

The police team did not yield and took away the arrested persons to Alagbon and the solicitors followed them as well. At FCID Alagbon, Inspector Lucas reportedly took statement from the wrongly arrested persons except the Chinese nationals who could not speak English language

The Inspector could not provide an interpreter and even when two professional interpreters were provided by the lawyers; Lucas refused to accept them and insisted on detaining all the innocent persons he (Lucas) had illegally arrested.

The solicitors alleged that Inspector Lucas openly demanded from Chief Giwa-Amu in presence of his colleagues (Uleyo and Amodu) the sum of N2million to effect the release of the persons arrested illegally and not wanted for any police investigation.

The lawyers bluntly refused to pay any money for bail pursuant to which the illegally arrested persons were taken into police cell and detained after detention warrant had been signed through the office of ASP Yusuf.

Prior to the illegal detention, the lawyers said ACP Danko and ASP Yusuf had given assurances that the persons arrested would be released since they were not the suspects wanted by the police but little did they (Giwa-Amu and his colleagues) know that there was a grand and wide conspiracy to detain their clients at the behest of one Afusat Falana who reportedly lives in the same neighborhood as Inspector Lucas and had procured the inspector to carry on the “grave infringement on the fundamental human rights of freedom of movement of their clients and cause unlawful and criminal detention of the persons.

The petitioners held that in spite of having provided responsible and respectable sureties, Inspector Lucas allegedly aided and abetted by ACP Danko and ASP Yusuf who equally claimed to be Station Officer at FCID Alagbon criminally detained the persons arrested.

They stated that the said matter for which their clients staff were clandestinely arrested and detained was not within the purview of police investigation and the persons arrested were no where involved at any time.

Obviously pissed up by the unseemly attitude of the police personnel, the petitioners said it was most disgusting and disappointing for ACP Danko and ASP Yusuf two senior officers to feign helplessness while Inspector Lucas; a junior officer carried out “his nefarious activities even when the matter was in their department and section.

Perhaps, to create an alibi for their unlawful action, Inspector Lucas was said to have claimed that his team had earlier served letters of invitation on the persons arrested and they did not appear to honour the said letters of invitation which according to the lawyers was a lie as the persons arrested were not suspects both in the petition on the subject matter of investigation or any matter closely connected to police investigation.

According to the lawyers, the arrested Chinese nationals are in Nigeria lawfully and were brought in pursuant to the Exchange of Economic Plan for the growth of Nigeria valued at over $150million.

They contended that the relationship associated with the Economic Plan has been badly damaged by virtue of the illegal arrest and detention by the police of the Chinese nationals who are in Nigeria in partnership with Rockston Dredging & Allied Works Limited and not as staff of their clients.

The lawyers have therefore appealed to the Inspector General of Police to use his good office to cause an investigation into the issues raised in the petition with a view to bringing the erring officers to justice since Inspector Lucas and his team unlawfully arrested and detained their clients while seeking bribe.

Written by: Frank Oshanugor

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