By Muhaimin Olowoporoku
A 38-year-old real estate agent, Afeez Mojeed, has dragged Deputy Commissioner of Police, Abba Kyari before the Lagos State Judicial Panel over allegation of extortion, brutality.
Mojeed, in his petition, claimed that officers of the defunct Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS, under the leadership of Kyari, brutalised and forced him to transfer various amount of money to two persons at different times.
He said his ordeal began on 18 October 2014.
He testified that on that night, four police officers in mufti stormed his Ajah residence, beat him and his wife, ransacked his house, took his wristwatch, phone, ATM card, cheque book, N280,000 and shop documents, among other items.
Mojeed said he was later whisked to the Lagos Police Command headquarters in Ikeja where the beating continued for three hours before he was eventually put in a cell.
He claimed that the police officers asked him to give them the password of his phone and his ATM pin the next day, but he gave them wrong numbers.
He added that the police later showed him one Edward Obinna who claimed he (Mojeed) had defrauded him of N97 million.
He said Obinna claimed he paid the money into his company’s account.
Mojeed claimed that when he challenged Obinna to show him his bank statement as evidence, Obinna later said he paid into the account of one Yusuf Olatunji Balogun, his cousin.
The complainant further revealed in his petition that after Obinna left the police station that night, he was tortured again for giving the police officers wrong ATM PIN.
He added that he was tortured until he gave the police officers the right PIN number of his ATM card.
Three days after, on the 22nd of October 2014, Afeez said under the supervision of Abba Kyari, the then OC SARS, he signed two cheques of N150,000.00 each payable to a faceless person named Nurudeen Alabi.
He said he was taken to Eco Bank to transfer N15 million which he has in a fixed deposit account to to the same Obina that same day.
However, the account officer on suspicion of how he appeared disapproved the transaction.
He said the police took him to another Diamond Bank branch to transfer N41 million to Obinna.
However, he said he was asked to return the following day to unfix the fixed account he kept the money.
The petitioner said he was again tortured at the station and taken out in the midnight with other detainees to unload three corpses from a Hilux bus.
Mojeed said he was threatened that he would be wasted like the corpses if he did not comply at the bank the following day.
The next day, he said he was taken to the Diamond Bank and on the way, the police officers with him branched at a boutique, bought him a new cloth, and cleaned him up.
He testified that at the bank, he transferred the sum of N41 million to Mr. Obina who drove behind them on the way to the bank.
He stated that he was returned to the police station and tortured again before being forced to sign an undertaking that he willingly transferred the money to Mr. Obinna.
Mojeed said on the 24th of October 2014, he was again taken to an unknown Zenith Bank branch, where he transferred N800,000 to the same Obinna and still forced to sign another cheque of N150,000 to one Mr. Nurudeen Alabi.
The petitioner said the police later called his wife and asked her to terminate the representation of his lawyer.
He added that after 14 days in custody, he was arraigned before a magistrate who granted him bail that same day.
He claimed that after he was released, he went for treatment at the General Hospital, Ajegunle because one of his ears was emitting pus.
Hearing of the petition was adjourned till 19 January, 2021.
This was after Mojeed’s counsel counsel, Kabir Akingbolu, applied for an adjournment so he could tender documents to prove the allegations of his client before the panel.