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Family Lament ‘Illegal Detention’ Of Their Son By NDLEA In Ondo, Allege Extortion By Officials

Posted by Samuel on Wed 19th Oct, 2022 - tori.ng

The family alleged that the anti-narcotics agency demanded N300,000 to release Abass after they found out that he committed no offence.

 

The family of Daniel Morris, has cried out over their son's alleged detention in Ondo State.

The family, in Akure, the Ondo State capital, decried the alleged arrest and detention of their son, Daniel Abass by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) for committing no offence.

Lamenting the incarceration of Abass at NDLEA office in Alagbaka, Akure, since October 10, 2022, when he was arrested at their shop, the family alleged that the anti-narcotics agency demanded N300,000 to release Abass after they found out that he committed no offence.

Narrating how Abass, 18, was arrested and detained, his father Morris said, "My son was at his mother's shop on Monday, October 10, 2022, when NDLEA officers loaded in five trucks, stormed the shop. My wife was not around as she went to the market to buy foodstuffs. The officers raided the shop and its surroundings and recovered a bag of weed otherwise known as marijuana which someone dropped near the shop without our knowledge.

"The officers arrested my son as a suspect despite pleading his innocence, but it is totally understandable because he's the suspect. I was notified that day the arrest happened but I couldn't take any step because the raid happened in the night."

According to him, his elder son went to their mother's shop the following morning to know what exactly happened. "He eventually found the owner of the weed, who dropped the weed in the shop.

"Upon meeting him, he told my son not to worry that he knew the NDLEA officers that came for raid, and that he would get him out. When we got to the NDLEA office, we saw the man with officers at their office."

He stated further that "when I visited my wife's shop in the night, I saw an NDLEA officer in the neighbourhood discussing with the owner of the weed. I approached him and told the guy (NDLEA official) who came to meet you today told you that the bag of weed belongs to him, why haven't you arrested him? That NDLEA officer then called the man and arrested him. Upon interrogation, he agreed and wrote even in his statement that the bag of weed belongs to him.

"After three days, I told the NDLEA officers that they have found the owner of the weed and he had been arrested, why are they still detaining my son, that he should be released since he is innocent? I was told to calm down, and after three days in custody, they called me that the NDLEA Commander was requesting to be paid N300,000 before they could release him. Then I asked the officer if he can pay such an amount for what he never partook in and benefitted anything from, but he said no.

"I know that after detaining my son for six days they are using it as a ploy to extort money from my family because if they are actually after the criminals, they would have released him immediately after confirming he knows nothing about it."

The family, however, queried "what will an NDLEA officer be doing with a hardened criminal in the night? How did he get a criminal number and why were they asking for N300,000 after discovering that my son is innocent of any crime? I came to the conclusion that the NDLEA officer used that guy to plant weed into people's houses and shops just to implicate them. I recorded all the conversation."

Shedding more light on the incident, one of Abass’ brothers told SaharaReporters that one of the officers had N5,000 from him on Wednesday last week.

According to him, the said officer told him that the N5,000 was to change their report on his brother from “guilty” to “not” guilty so that the Commander would direct his release. "To my greatest surprise, three days later, the said officer asked me to come to their office, saying the commander was requesting N300,000 for his release. Then I asked him ‘N300,000 for what offence’ and till now they have not responded to the question."

When SaharaReporters contacted the spokesman for NDLEA, Femi Babafemi, he promised to investigate the incident.



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