Billionaire kidnapper, Chukwudumeme Onwuamadike also known as Evans, was arraigned yesterday before an Ikeja High Court in which he pleaded guilty to the two count charges of conspiracy and kidnapping.
His lawyer, Olukoya Ogungbeje, has then again claimed that Evans was in fact forced to confess by the police. As stated by him, Evans informed him that the police asked him to confess otherwise they would kill him.
In a report issued to newsmen, Ogungbeje said Evans who has been in police detention since his arrest on June 10, was first denied access to his solicitors. He reported that himself and his other legal staff heard about his arraignment through social media as not any letter was delivered to them informing them of their client’s arraignment.
“It must be noted that our client had been in police custody since 10th of June 2017 till date and his lawyer and family members have been denied access to him. His arraignment was brought to our attention through the social media platform. We rushed to court in a bid to confer with our client before the commencement of proceedings but the Police denied us access to him. We sought for an adjournment to enable us to confer with our client in line with the provisions of Section 36(6) (2) of the Constitution but same was turned down by the court. Moreso, the information/charge sheet was served on us in open court on the same day of arraignment. After the purported guilty plea of our client and the court rose, our client told us clearly that the police told him to plead guilty failing which the police will kill him. This is definitely unconstitutional and we intend to challenge this unconstitutional procedure of hoodwinking, unduly influencing, brainwashing and coercing an accused into entering a guilty plea against his wish and freewill. Our client pointedly told us that being informed now, he will change his ‘police motivated guilty plea’ to ‘not guilty’ at the next adjourned date. It is settled law that plea of guilty must be made voluntarily and devoid of any influence, coercion, and manipulation. We have a responsibility to assist the cause of justice in accordance with the law,”
the statement read