Kidnapping: Court Declines Granting Wadume, Others Bail

The Federal High Court sitting in Abuja on Wednesday declined to grant bail to the Taraba state kidnap kingpin, Bala Hamisu, Aka Wadume and six others standing trial for kidnapping, possession of AK-47 rifles and dealing in prohibited firearms contrary to section 27 (1)(a)(I) and (1)(b)(iii) of the firearms act.

The trial Judge, Justice Binta Nyako, while ruling on the bail application filed by Wadume and his codefendants said she has no reason granting bail to the defendants as she has already ordered an accelerated hearing in the matter.

The Judge, in the summary ruling, ordered that Wadume and his codefendants be moved from the custody of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the police to the Kuje Correctional Center in Abuja.

She also ordered that the authorities of the Correctional Center in Kuje should allow the defendants access to the medical facility and their counsel while in their custody.

It would be recalled that Wadume was first arrested in Ibi, Taraba State, on August 6, 2019, by policemen from the Intelligence Response Team of the Inspector General of the Police office.

He was arrested for a kidnap case in which he was said to have demanded N106 million as ransom and as he was being conveyed from Ibi to Abuja, an army of ten soldiers, led by Captain Tijjani Balarabe shot at them, killing three of the policemen to free Wadume from custody.

Wadume was later rearrested for interrogation before he was charged along with six others in February 2020.

The soldiers who were initially charged along with Wadume had their names removed from the charge sheet as defendants by the Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation, which took over the prosecution of the matter from the police.

Earlier in the proceedings yesterday, the first prosecution witness, Felix Adolije, who was led in evidence on Monday, was cross-examined by counsel to the defendants.

The prosecution also called additional two witnesses, who told the court of the role they played in Wadume’s escape from custody.

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