A Federal High Court, sitting in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, has granted an application tendered by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, to detain Deputy Commissioner of Police, DCP, Abba Kyari and six others-ACP Sunday J. Ubia; ASP James Bawa, Inspector Simon Agirigba, Inspector John Nuhu, Chibunna Patrick Umeibe and Emeka Alfonsus Ezenwanne, over their roles in a 25kg cocaine deal.
The court, presided over by Justice Zainab Dimka Abubakar, granted the application to detain the suspects who are still under investigation over their involvement in the drug deal on Tuesday, February 22.
The granted application is as contained in suit number FHC/ABJ/CS/111/2022, argued by NDLEA’s Director of Prosecution and Legal Services, Mr. Sunday Joseph, seeking the leave of the court to detain the suspects in anti-narcotic agency custody for 14 days, as pending the conclusion of investigation.
In an affidavit deposed in support of the motion, the NDLEA stated that the 6th and 7th respondents, Umeibe and Ezenwanne, confessed upon their arrest in Enugu that they imported the seized cocaine through Addis-Ababa to Enugu on January 19, 2022.
It further disclosed that the 1st to 5th respondents, Kyari, Ubia, Bawa, Agirigba and Nuhu, are police officers who carried out the arrest of the 6th and 7th respondents and transferred them to NDLEA for further investigation.
“That investigation by the NDLEA revealed that the 1st to 5th respondents have compromised the whole operation and were involved in the importation, trafficking, and dealing and also tampered with the recovered cocaine.
That the 1st to 5th respondents have volunteered their statements upon preliminary investigation, which has shown complicity in the case. Copies of statements are hereby attached and marked Annexure NDLEA 4,5,6,7,8, & 9 respectively.
“That the investigation will take some time as there are complicated dimensions of the case that require follow-up and unravelling. That the investigation is likely to extend to foreign countries, where some people linked to this trans-national drug trafficking activities reside.
“That it is in line with the above that the Applicant is applying to the Honourable Court for a period of 14 days in the first instance to detain the respondents to enable it carry out its investigation successfully.”
In her ruling, Justice Zainab Dimka Abubakar granted the NDLEAs prayer and directed that the Agency should at the expiration of the 14 days detention order either seek an extension, file a charge against the suspects or arraign them before the court.
Kyari and the four other police officers were arrested and handed over to NDLEA on Monday, February 14, by police authorities, five hours after the Agency declared him wanted in connection with the drug deal.