On Wednesday, a Federal High Court in Abuja dismissed the Federal Government's lawsuit seeking to extradite Senator Buruji Kashamu, of Ogun State, over narcotic charges in the United States.
Senator Kashamu is a notorious drug baron who made his fortune distributing narcotics and heroin in the United States during the 1990s. He is currently wanted by the United States Department of Justice for smuggling these drugs through Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport, according to court documents.
Recently, the Nigerian Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) raided his Lagos residence and attempted to abduct him for extradition to the United States. However, Senator Kashamu thwarted their attempt by hiding in his bathroom for nearly a week while the court forced NDLEA agents from the premises. The NDLEA have never been able to provide evidence that they entered his home lawfully.
Today’s ruling came after Justice Ibrahim Buba and O.E. Abang ruled that Senator Kashamu could not be extradited under these circumstances. It was Justice Gabriel Kolawole who today finally dismissed the NDLEA and Attorney General’s attempt to extradite Kashamu because it was an abuse of the court process.
Justice Kolawole said, "the suit was initiated in flagrant abuse of and disobedience to the orders made by Justices Abang and Buba of the Federal High Court, Lagos, which have extinguished the current action by the applicant."
"Therefore, to accede to the applicant's request would be against the legal concept of judicial precedences and res judicata."
"This suit is, hereby, dismissed, with no orders made as to cost against the applicant."
In response, the Counsel to the Federal Government, pleaded with the court to issue a bench warrant for Mr. Kashamu's extradition.
The immediate reply of Mr. Kashamu's counsel, Alex Izinyon, urged the court to strike down that request. Izinyon made a case for the court to dismiss the matter by saying that the orders of Justice Buba and Abang had stamped out the current action of the prosecution.