A businessman, Babatunde Williams, has accused some men of the Lagos State Police Command of extorting him of $5,500 worth of cryptocurrency (about N2m) around Lekki in the Eti-Osa Local Government Area of the state.
Williams said that he was returning home after inspecting a property around Lekki on Friday, May 28, 2021, when four policemen accosted him and demanded his vehicle papers, adding that he was complying with their order when two of the policemen forced themselves into his car.
While they were in his car, the businessman stated that the policemen handcuffed and forced him into a private vehicle and allegedly beat him till he gave the password to his Bitcoin wallet.
Williams alleged that the policemen withdrew $5,500 from his wallet and transferred it to the wallet of their accomplice, adding that they dropped him off after completing the transaction and fled.
He stated, “Around 3.15pm, I was coming out of the Lekki County Estate, where I went to supervise a project. I was in gridlock around the VGC when the policemen in a Toyota Sienna vehicle accosted me and ordered me to park.
“One of them in mufti asked to see my tinted glass permit and vehicle papers. I was still wondering who he was when he called an armed policeman in uniform. They were asking me to park and two of the four policemen entered my vehicle.
“They accused me of disobeying their orders. One of the cops asked me to make a U-turn and park by the North-West filling station. I was handcuffed on both hands and beaten inside my car. Later, they took me into the Sienna and drove me around without telling me where they were taking me to.
“They continued to beat me as they asked for the password of my phone. When I could no longer bear the pain, I had to unlock my phone. They saw my Bitcoin wallet and got someone, who provided them with a wallet, and transferred $5,500 (N2.2m) worth of Bitcoin.”
Williams, who lamented that he was robbed by the policemen, said the case was reported at the Maroko Police Division for investigation.
He stated, “They called the policeman with my car to bring it to a location around the 1004 Estate on Victoria Island. They switched off my phone so that I won’t be able to call for help. They parked their vehicle at a distance, where I couldn’t see their number plate, and asked me to pick my car keys on the bonnet and they drove away.
“I initially reported a case of robbery at the Maroko Police Station. I was asked to report the incident at the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department for further investigation.”
When contacted, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Muyiwa Adejobi, said he was not aware of the incident and would have to be briefed by the Divisional Police Officer, Maroko Police Station, before he could comment on it.
“The case is under the jurisdiction of the Maroko Police Station. I will find out from the DPO there and get back to you.”
However, he had yet to get back to newsmen as of the time of filing this report.