An Anambra High Court sitting in Awka, on Tuesday, slammed N10 million damages against an Assistant Inspector General of Police, in charge of Zone 13 Police Headquarters, Abutu Yaro, for illegally detaining one Mr Chukwuemeka Ekwueme, a real estate developer.
Justice D.A. Onyefulu, who delivered the judgment, also awarded the sum of N200,000 as cost of litigation in favour of the plaintiff.
His Lordship also gave an injunction restraining the police from arresting, detaining, harassing or intimidating the plaintiff on the same matter, but proceed with charges against him.
The counsel to the plaintiff, Alex Ejesieme, had filed a suit in enforcement of fundamental human right action against Yaro and others in Suit no: A/Misc 461/2022 over the arrest and detention of Ekwueme by the Police ZHQ between December 14 and December 28.
Other defendants in the suit were the Public Relations Officer of the zone, Nkiru Nwode, and one Emmanuel Awah from the PRO’a office.
Ejesieme said Ekwueme, the CEO of S. Bigman Multi Biz Concept, a real estate company, was arrested and detained in relation to his move to develop a land at Oba International Airport, Idemili South Local Government Area.
He said the police arrested him based on a petition by the community but had held him in detention without prosecuting him since December 14, a situation he described as “draconian policing”.
Recall that the same court had on December 28, 2022 ordered an immediate release of the plaintiff following a bail application by Ejesieme.