Justice Mohammed Idris of the Federal High Court in Ikoyi, Lagos, has ordered the Nigeria Police Force to pay the sum of two million Naira to Okwuchukwu Obiechina, brother-in-law of self-confessed kidnap kingpin, Chukwudumeme Onwuamadike, aka Evans.
He ordered the immediately release of Obiechina, adding that he be charge to court if the police have any case against him.
The judge also ordered the police to tender an apology to the kidnapper's brother-in-law. The apology is to be published in two national newspapers.
Justice Idris, on Monday, gave the judgment in favor of a fundamental human rights lawsuit filed by Evans's lawyer, Olukoya Ogungbeje, challenging the unlawful detention of Obienchina by the police.
The judge ruled that Obiechina’s arrest and detention was unconstitutional, holding that the remand order which the police claimed to have obtained from a magistrates’ court was invalid.
One Okoliagu Abunike, who deposed a 15-paragraph affidavit in support of the ex parte application, said Mr. Obiechina was arrested by a team of policemen led by two officers, identified only as Phillip and Christian.
Mr. Abunike argued that Mr. Obiechina was arrested and detained solely because of his relationship with Evans, adding that the police officers had been bragging that no court would order the release of Mr. Obiechina.
“Since June 26, 2017, the first applicant is still being detained at the detention cell of the police till date, even beyond the constitutionally allowed time,” Mr. Abunike said.
“The applicant has not committed any offense known to law to warrant his being arrested and detained by the operatives of the respondents.
“The applicant has not committed any offense known to the law that will warrant the infringement of his right to life, personal liberty, fair hearing, freedom of movement and dignity of human person,” he argued.