THE Central Criminal Court, London, has again denied bail to a former Nigerian Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, who is undergoing trial for alleged organ trafficking.
Ekweremadu had been arrested and remanded in custody since June after detectives were alerted to potential offences under modern slavery legislation and an investigation was launched.
In a pre-trial hearing on Tuesday, December 20, the defence counsel argued that the Nigerian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom (UK) and the Attorney-General of the Federation had written to the court that Ekweremadu was not a flight risk.
However, the prosecution opposed the motion for bail citing a July 18 letter by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) which referred to the assets forfeiture proceedings against the lawmaker in the Federal High Court, Abuja.
The court subsequently denied the bail on the grounds that Ekweremadu remained a flight risk and could jump bail.
“I am entirely satisfied there remains a flight risk,” the presiding judge said, noting that bail would not make much difference “as the trial is just over a month away”.
Ekweremadu and his wife Beatrice are charged with conspiracy to facilitate the travel of another person with a view to exploitation, namely organ harvesting.
It was also gathered that a daughter of the late of the Ekweremadus, Sonia, had been suffering from a kidney disease and recommended for a transplant.
The trial has been adjourned until January 31st, 2023