A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos, Southwest Nigeria on Tuesday dismissed a N300 million fundamental right enforcement suit, filed by suspected billionaire kidnapper, Chukwudumeme Onwuamadike (a.k.a. Evans, ) challenging his detention for 11 days, before he was charged to court.
The Presiding Judge, Abdulazeez Anka, dismissed the suit for lacking in merit. Evans, through his lawyer, Olukayode Ogungbeje, had filed the N300 million fundamental rights enforcement suit against the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) last year alleging wrongful detention.
Joined as respondents in the suit are the Nigerian Police Force (NPF), Commissioner of Police, Lagos State and the Lagos State Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) as second, third and fourth respondents respectively.
In the fundamental rights enforcement suit, Evans had urged the court for an order directing the police to charge him to court immediately or release him on bail.
Evans also alleged that he was subjected to media trial during his arrest. Ogungbeje argued that Evans’ detention since June 10 to 22, 2017 without being charged to court was a violation of his client’s fundamental rights enshrined in sections 35 (1) (c) (3) (4) (5) (a) (b) and 36 of the Constitution.
However, the police through its counsel, Emmanuel Eze, urged the court to discountenance Evan’s application, and dismissed same accordingly, for lacking in merit, as no infraction was committed as claimed by Evans, as all legal and due diligent was followed in the case of the alleged kidnapper.
In his judgment on the suit, Justice Anka ruled that Ogungbeje was unable to argue his case based on Section 35 and 36 of the constitution.
The judge also ruled that the decision of the police to detain Evans between June 10 and 22, 2017, was reasonable, as the police had told the court that they had an order to detained him for 90 days.
On the allegation of subjecting the applicant, (Evans) to media trial, the judge stated that there is no law that could stop the media from carrying out their constitutional duty.
Consequently, Justice Anka in his verdict declared that Evans’ suit could not succeed and dismissed it accordingly.
“This case cannot succeed and accordingly dismissed. All parties have the right of appeal”, Justice Anka ordered.