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A Nigerian Police Officer

27.12.2021 news Police Promote Officer Involved in Extrajudicial Killing in Akwa Ibom

Published 27th Dec, 2021

By Gabriel Ogunjobi

The Police Service Commission has approved the promotion of Samuel Martins, the police officer attached to the Akwa Ibom State Command, who supervised the extrajudicial killing of Edward Leera while in their custody.

According to Ikechukwu Ani, the spokesman for the commission, on December 21, Martins would be among the 74 Superintendents of Police (SPs) who will be promoted to the rank of Chief Superintendents of Police (CSPs).

The commission’s decision was reached during their 13th plenary meeting between December 20 and 21 in Abuja.

In August, FIJ reported how some Intelligence Response Team (IRT) officers, including Martins, the team’s head in Akwa Ibom, and David Agbor, another officer, disobeyed court orders to release Leera, who had spent over three months in their custody over trumped-up charges of illegal possession of a firearm.

 

Samuel Martins

FIJ obtained evidence of how these officers withdrew nearly N500,000 from Leera’s bank account before the detainee died in police custody around July 2020.

READ ALSO: Abba Kyari’s Men Tortured Edward Leera to Death. Now, They Want to Cover it Up 

Pained by the police’s refusal to release Leera, Confidence, his brother, petitioned the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), which was in charge of probing cases of police brutality, in Abuja.

The panel established that Leera was extrajudicially killed. On December 23, the panel eventually awarded a sum of N10 million to the deceased’s family, promising to recommend the prosecution of the culpable police officers.

When FIJ contacted Martins in August, he had simply said, “If you know about that case, you should know that it’s in court and before the Human Rights Commission, so I have no comment”.

IRT, like the proscribed Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), has often been accused of criminal activities. Abba Kyari, the former head of the police unit, was recently indicted by a United States District Court over his role in a fraud involving Ramon Abass, also known as Hushpuppi.

Published 27th Dec, 2021

By Gabriel Ogunjobi

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