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Drug Trafficking: Abba Kyari, 6 others to be arraigned on 8-count charge on Monday – NDLEA

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The federal government will, on Monday, arraigned DCP Abba Kyari on eight-count charge bordering on drug trafficking.

Mr Kyari, alongside six others, will be arraigned by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) before Justice Emeka Nwite of the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court.

Defendants in the charge marked FHC/ABJ/57/2022 include four members of the Inspector General of Police Intelligence Response Team (IRT). They are ACP Sunday J. Ubia, ASP Bawa James, Insp. Simon Agirigba and Insp. John Nuhu.

Other defendants are two alleged drug traffickers arrested at the Akanu Ibiam International Airport in Enugu; Chibunna Patrick Umeibe and Emeka Alphonsus Ezenwanne.

The NDLEA, in the charge it filed through a team of lawyers led by its director of prosecution and legal services, Joseph Sunday, accused Mr Kyari and the four other police officers of conspiracy, obstruction, and dealing in cocaine worth 17.55kg.

The anti-narcotics agency also alleged that Mr Kyari and his men, currently in custody, also unlawfully tampered with 21.25kg worth of cocaine.
Messrs Umeibe and Ezenwanne were accused of conspiring with others at large to import 21.35kg of cocaine into the country.

In a related development, the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, had, on Wednesday, filed an application for the commencement of extradition process of Mr Kyari, formerly the head of the IRT.

The government filed the application marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/249/2022, under the Extradition Act. This was part of the Nigerian government’s approval of the request by the U.S. for Mr Kyari’s extradition.

Mr Kyari is to stand trial for conspiracy to commit wire fraud, money laundering and identity theft. He was accused of conspiring with a UAE-based Nigerian Internet fraudster Ramon Abbas, aka Hushpuppi, to commit the crime.

A grand jury on April 29, 2021 had filed an indictment against Mr Kyari with the approval of the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, and the court issued a warrant of arrest for him.

Justice Zainab Abubakar of the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court had on February 22 gave the NDLEA the go-ahead to detain Mr Kyari and six others for another 14 days to conclude its investigation.

His application for bail was, on Monday, turned down by a sister court, presided over by Justice Inyang Ekwo.

The suspended cop had challenged the order made on February 22 by Ms Abubakar, empowering the NDLEA to detain him for more days. In an application filed by his counsel, Mr Kyari prayed the court to set aside the order for his detention, arguing that the order was issued without him being accorded a fair hearing.

The court had fixed a hearing in Mr Kyari’s application for March 8.

(NAN)