Ikorodu Bank Robbery Suspects Drag Police To Court

A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos, Southwest Nigeria has
adjourned till September 7, 2015 for hearing, a suit seeking an order of the
court compelling the police to bring to court the four robbery suspects paraded
in connection with the recent bank robbery in Ikorodu, Lagos.
The court adjourned the case to enable the Inspector General
of Police and other respondents react to the suit filed by a Lagos-based
lawyer, Olusegun Akanbi, on behalf of the four suspects.
The suspects – Agbojule Bright, Promise Abiwa, Monday
Omoboye and Monday Ikuesan, on July 6, 2015 were paraded by the police in
connection with the robbery of the Ipakodo branches of First Bank and Zenith
Bank in Ikorodu, where an 18-man gang, which they allegedly belonged to, carted
away about N80m on June 24, 2015.

The four suspects had reportedly confessed to playing
different roles in the robbery while three Sport Utility Vehicles allegedly
bought from the proceeds of the robbery were recovered from them.
In their suit filed before Justice Mohammed Yunusa, their
lawyer, Akanbi, claimed that the police violated the right of the suspects to
remain silent or to avoid answering any questions until after consultation with
a legal practitioner or any person of their choice as stipulated by Section
35(2) of the 1999 Constitution.
Akanbi stated that the suspects “made confessional
statements to the members of the press out of duress”, contending that the
police had no right to parade the suspects to be interviewed by the media
“unless such a suspect wishes to give an interview after the matter has been
charged to a court of competent jurisdiction.”
According to the lawyer, the suspects might not be able to
get fair trial in court since they have “already suffered prejudice in the eye
of the public due to unfair publicity and unprofessional acts of the
He claimed that the police had neither allowed him nor the
family members of the suspects to see them since their arrest.
“The applicants’ constitutional rights under Section 36 of
the 1999 Constitution are at stake because the defendants have already taken a
bias position by denying the applicants’ family or their counsel their right of
visiting them in police custody,” he said.
“It will be in the interest of justice if the applicants are
brought before this honourable court so that the court can ascertain whether
the applicants are still alive.

He claimed that the suspects were entitled to damages for
what he described as their unlawful detention, urging the court to award N5m
against the defendants in their favour.

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