Evans accuses prison officials of starving him

SUSPECTED billionaire kidnapper, Chukwudumeme Onwuamadike, popularly known as Evans, on Friday raised an alarm that prison authorities for three days in a row, have denied him food.

Evans said this during an argument which ensued between him and prison officers immediately he was ushered into the courtroom.

His counsel Olukoya Ogungbeje, also attested to the fact that his client is being starved.

According to Evans, the prison authorities deprived him of change of clothes, food, and access to having his bath since Wednesday.

“This is unfair, I have not been given food and change of clothes.  I was not given an opportunity to bath on Wednesday. I am seriously hungry now,” Evans lamented.

“They locked us in one place, no food, no bathing,” Evans shouted to the hearing of the reporters.

His fellow defendants also confirmed the development even as a senior NPS official denied the allegations.

Ogungbeje who was visibly angry by the development sought permission to go and procure food for his clients, pleading that only a living person that can stand trial.

Evans and five others were charged with conspiracy to commit the felony and kidnapping contrary to section 411 of the Criminal Law Cap 17 Laws of Lagos State 2015, claims they have since denied.

Evans co-defendants are Uche Amadi, Ogechi Uchechukwu, Okwuchukwu Nwachukwu, Chilaka Ifeanyi and Victor Chukwunonso Aduba.

At the commencement of Friday’s proceedings, counsel to the sixth defendant, Emmanuel Ochai also corroborated all the defendants claims that they had not been fed or allowed to have their bath in three days.

Responding to the allegations, the presiding judge, Justice HakeemOshodi, raised concerns about the welfare of the defendants.

“The Director of Public Prosecution should please investigate this allegation. A defendant is innocent until he is proven guilty by a competent court,” he said.

In her response, the Lagos State Prosecutor, Ms Titilayo Shitta-Bey, told the court that the prosecution would promptly investigate the allegations.

Earlier during the proceedings, Justice Oshodi dismissed an application by the only female defendant,  Ogechi Uchechukwu asking to be released on bail.

In his ruling, Justice Oshodi said he found no merit in her application for bail, noting that the defendant has no concrete base in Lagos and would constitute a flight risk.

“The 6th defendant claims that the police only arrested her because she is the wife of one of the defendants. But according to the prosecution, the No 21, Ishaye street, Igando apartment where the victims of the kidnapping ring were allegedly kept, was rented in her name.

“In her statement, she claimed that her husband and the 1st defendant were business partners who deal in drugs, claims which need to be proved before this court. I hereby find no merit in this application, and the defendant should be kept in custody for her own safety due to the severity of the case,” the judge ruled.

The matter could, however, could not go on as the 4th defendant had no legal representation. The judge thereafter adjourned the matter till January 19, 2018, for cross-examination of the first witness and continuation of trial.

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