Evans, whose real name is Chukwudidumeme Onuamadike, was considered one of Nigeria's most dreadful kidnappers until he was caught by the police. His arrest was celebrated not only by his captives but by Nigerians and the cops. In fact, the alleged kidnap kingpin was given a celebrity status as some excited policemen posed for photographs with him.
He was alleged to be involved in various kidnappings across the country. His arrest came after one Donatus Dunu, who was abducted in front of his office in Ilupeju, on February 14, 2017, by gun-toting men. They blocked his car with their SUV and threw him into the booth but he later escaped, though his family had paid N150 million for his release. Evans reportedly insisted on N500 million. However, Evans allegedly collected €223,000 (N100 million) as ransom.
Evans, who hails from Umudim Village, Nweni North Local Government Area of Anambra State, was charged to court alongside five accomplices, the charges relate to the alleged kidnap and murder of Sylvanius Ahanonu Hafiia, and the conspiracy and attempted kidnap of the chairman of The Young Shall Grow Motors, Vincent Obianodo.
He is facing separate charges from Judges which include: conspiracy, kidnap and murder before Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo, also, he is facing two separate charges bordering on conspiracy to kidnap, kidnapping and attempted murder before Justice Adedayo Akintoye, while there is a fifth one before Justice Oshodi.
However, the case has not been concluded since August 30, 2017, when he was first charged to court.
Below is a timeline of when the alleged kidnapper was arrested and how the case has been in court for almost 2 years.
June 10, 2017: Evans was arrested by the policemen in his home in Magodo, Lagos. It was reported that he had packed his luggage, ready to fly to South Africa, the next day. He was arrested along with six members of his gang which are Nwosu Chukwuma, aka Sudo, 42; Suoyo Paul aka Nwana, 42; Felix Chinemerem, 36; Chukwuemeka Bosah, 28; Uchechukwu Amadi and Ogechi Amadi.
June 11, 2017: Evans explained why he became a kidnapper after he was paraded at the Lagos Police Command Headquarters, Ikeja Lagos. He said, “I was into auto spare parts importation but lost all my money, over N25 million, when customs seized my goods. From there, I relocated to South Africa, where I started peddling drugs. But along the line, my business partner shot me and passed me off as dead. I recuperated, returned to Nigeria and decided to start kidnapping rich men for ransom.”
June 12, 2017: Evans started naming bigwigs in kidnapping in the police custody and the high profile accomplices.
June 13, 2017: An ex-militant from Bayelsa, Suoyo Paul, 42 said Evans paid him N3 million to supply guns. He said he met Evans in 2008 when he was in the camp as a militant.
June 14, 2017: The infamous billionaire kidnapper, Evans, entered a guilty plea to kidnap charges. This was because his lawyer said police told him to plead guilty that failure to do so he would be killed.
June 15, 2017: A report came out that the mother of Evans the kidnappers, went into hiding. She reportedly went into hiding to avoid the crowd that besieged her Umudim, Nnewi home in Anambra state after news of the arrest of her son became public knowledge.
June 23, 2017: Police arrested a soldier who was a member of Evans’ gang while his kidnapping spree lasted. The soldier, a lance corporal, was arrested at about 9 pm in Ojo area of Lagos State. This was made possible because of the alleged confession made by Evans. The soldier, however, said in his confession that he had accompanied Evans in three different kidnap operations in Lagos, and got N2 million, N1.5 million and N3 million respectively.
August 30, 2017: Evans and five other people were first arraigned with seven counts bordering on attempted murder, murder, kidnapping, and illegal firearms deal against them
November 3, 2017: During the resumption of his trial Evans filed an application seeking to be released on bail and for his case to be given an accelerated hearing by the court.
November 10, 2017: Evans pleaded not guilty to the charges before Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo.
May 7, 2018: Evans wept in court, alleged maltreatment. He told the judge, Adedayo Akintoye, that he was not well-fed by the prison officials who he claimed were "taking his case personal".
June 15, 2018: Evans’ lawyer withdrew from the kidnap case.
June 26, 2018: The trial was put on hold as a result of the annual vacation of judges. Ruling on this day, Justice Akintoye upheld the DPP’s arguments and dismissed Evans’ applications. So, the case was postponed to Thursday, September 13.
September 17, 2018: Court Jailed Evans’ gang members for 41 years. The judgment was passed by Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo who sentenced the duo of 32- year old Kelvin Emenike Ukoh and Emeka Obasi, 33 over the abduction of one Ugoje Jude, a shipping agent, and his employee, Miss Piriye Gogo, on August 3, 2012.
January 16, 2019: During a trial within a trial, Evans denied the confessional statement he made to the police after his arrest in 2017, saying it was made under duress. He said he signed the statement under duress to save him from being tortured to death.
January 30, 2019: Absence of witness stalled Evans’ trial. The absence of one Idowu Haruna, a police officer, and a witness for the prosecution stalled the trial of the alleged kidnapper. With this, the judge, Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo adjourned the case until February 6, for trial. The judge also ordered that the second and third defendants, who had no legal representative, should ensure that their counsel was in court on the next adjourned date.
February 1, 2019: Judge told Evans that there wass no proof he was tortured.
February 6, 2019: The case was adjourned because he was unable to pay for his legal representation. The second time the case would be adjourned before Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo of an Ikeja Special Offences Court.
March 1, 2019: Evans’ case was adjourned until March 22, 2019, because of the absence of his counsel. It was also reported that Evans has been a repeated absentee in court since the case started. |The absence of Evans’ counsel, Chino Obiagwu (SAN), on Friday, March 1, again stalled the continuation of hearing in the on-going trial of the alleged kingpin.
March 22, 2019: The court adjourned the case until March 29 because Mr. Chinoye Obiagwu (SAN), the counsel to Evans and Chiemeka Arinze his co-defendant in one of the kidnap cases, had written to the court to request an adjournment in both cases.
April 10, 2019: Another case of Evans involving Justice Adebayo Akintoye of an Igbosere High court, Lagos was expected to be heard. The judge was angry to see none of the defence counsel in court. He ordered Evans to engage a counsel by May 17. According to the report, no member of Evans’ legal team was present, adding that there was no letter to the court to explain the reason for the absence.
May 17, 2019: Evans engages new lawyer this was because Justice Adebayo Akintoye had on April 10 ordered Evans to get a legal representative before the next sitting. This is the third time Evans had changed his lawyers. The lawyers pleaded to the court to allow them to study the case newly collected.
Evans On A Kidnapping Spree
June 16, 2012: Mbarikatta William Uboma, 35, was kidnapped at about 11 am upon his arrival from Hungary, close to his house in Nigeria. He was in the company of his brother, on their way from the airport, when another car emerged and blocked theirs. They later demanded a ransom of N10 million.
However, N2 million was later paid while they collected other personal valuables. He was finally 'dropped' at Okota on the third day.
August 3, 2012: Paul Cole, 34, from Ohafia in Abia State, a director with Ocean Glory Commodities, Apapa, was kidnapped at Festac Town, along with his General Manager, Jude Ugoje, and another staff, Piriye Gogo, and taken to an unknown destination. On August 6, 2012, N5 million ransom was paid to secure their release.
August 19, 2012: Mohammed Jamal, 22, a Lebanese, was kidnapped at Ajah by three armed men. N7 million ransom was paid for his release.
September 19, 2012: Kingsley Nwokenta, 34, was kidnapped at Mile 2 under the bridge, after he left Lebanana Bar, in Festac. He coughed up N1.5 million ransom while they made away with his black Toyota Venza and other valuables.
October 10th, 2012: Anthony Ozoanidobi, 41, was kidnapped along Marwa Road Satellite town. Ransom of N1.5 million was paid after which he was released at Apple junction, Amuwo-Odofin.
August 20, 2012: Leo Abraham, 58, was Kidnapped. He paid a ransom of N5 million.
2015: James Uduji was kidnapped close to his house at 7th Avenue, Festac town. Held for six weeks. He paid a ransom of $1 million.
2015: Chief Raymond Okoye was kidnapped in 2015. He paid $1 million as ransom after being held captive for two months.
2015: Uche Okoroafor, a trader at Alaba, was kidnapped and held captive for three months. He parted with $1 million.
November 2015: Elias Ukachukwu was kidnapped and made to cough up $1 million.
January 21, 2016: Ojukwu Cosmas, 45, sells Toyota spare parts. He was kidnapped at Festac town. It was not clear when and how he was released.
July 2016: Francis Umeh, a spare parts dealer at Aspanda, was kidnapped at Raji Rasaki Estate. He was released after two months.