Alleged billionaire kidnapper, Chukwudimeme ‘Evans’ Onwuamadike has denied being a kidnapper, claiming that he is an ornaments and Horlicks dealer.
Recall that Onwuamadike is standing trial alongside Uche Amadi, Ogechi Uchechukwu, Chilaka Ifeanyi, Okwuchukwu Nwachukwu and Victor Aduba over the alleged kidnap of Donatus Dunu, chief executive officer of Maydon Pharmaceutical Ltd and collection of £223,000 (N100 million) as ransom from his family.
All the defendants who were first arraigned on August 30, 2017, on two counts of conspiracy and kidnapping, have maintained their innocence.
After being led in by his defense counsel Victor Okpara on Tuesday August 3, Evans denied all allegations of kidnapping levelled against him by the Lagos State Government, insisting he was a legitimate businessman.
Claiming that he was coerced into admitting being a kidnapper after the police in a bid to make him confess, extra-judicially killed four individuals in his presence, the alleged kidnapper also denied having “Evans” as his nickname.
“I live at Fred Shoboyede Street, Magodo Phase II, Lagos. I am a businessman and I deal in ornaments and Horlicks.
“My lord, my name is not Evans and I don’t have a nickname.”
Ifeanyi and Aduba, two former soldiers of the Nigerian Army who also testified on Tuesday, denied being accomplices to the crime.
Aduba recounted refusing to sign a written statement admitting to the crime after allegedly being ordered to do so by one Idowu Haruna, said to be a member of the police intelligence response team (IRT). He also showed the court an injury on his body, claiming he was taken to a “theatre” where he was beaten and cut with a machete by Haruna.
Aduba also recalled how three men; Felix Chinemeren, Paul Samyan and Chukwuma Nwosu who were initially paraded before the media as kidnappers, were killed by members of the IRT.
“I was still being told to sign some papers but I refused and I said if I refuse I will travel (slang for killed). At that point, Idowu Haruna brought out his phone for me to look at some pictures.
“When I looked at it, I discovered it was the dead bodies of the three men with whom I was in custody. That was how I was forced to sign the papers.”
As the defence team of Chukwudimeme Onwuamadike a.k.a Evans and that of his five co-defendants closed their case before the Ikeja high court, Justice Hakeem Oshodi gave the defence 30 days to file their final written addresses.
The prosecution was given another 30 days to respond to the final written addresses of the defence.
The case was then adjourned till November 5 for adoption of the final written addresses.