Justice Abdul-aziz Anka of the Federal High Court Yola, granted the order in response to an application filed on behalf of 15 applicants by their lawyer, Lionard Nzadon.
The applicants are; Adamu Eli, Edan Andrawus, Dimliura Akila, James Na’abi, Amos Tafida, Usman Saudi, Munriura Amos, Shehu Audu, Godwin Umar, Sumobiu Yakubu, Gaman Yoyila, Stanley Kongo, Oliver Haniel and two others.
In the application, the applicants claimed that their fundamental right to freedom was violated by the AGF on whose directives they were illegally arrested by operatives of DSS and subsequently remanded at the Kuje Correctional Centre in Abuja.
SaharaReporters gathered that the applicants are among 44 persons tried and discharged by Justice Anka on June 8, 2022, but were bizarrely rearrested, moved to Abuja and incarcerated at the Kuje prison.
As further gathered, they were detained for eight years, tried for five years on alleged illegal possession of firearms without substantial evidence, according to the trial judge, Justice Anka; who consequently discharged them.
Before discharging them after ruling on “a no case submission,” Justice Anka held that the prosecution failed to diligently prosecute by calling only three witnesses, as against what contains in their list of witnesses submitted to the court, according one of their lawyer, Daniel Danladi.
However, just after passing his judgement, operatives of DSS stormed the court to forcibly take them into custody against the law.
“The prosecution knowing what the outcome of the ruling on our ‘no case submission’ will be like, they filed another case, charged the same people standing trial; which is an abuse of court process, because you cannot stand trial in two cases having the same elements, the same ingredients. In law this amounts to double jeopardy.
“So they arranged with the DSS and laid a siege to the court to forcibly take them from court so that they can stand another trial.
“Now the position of the law is very clear, DSS are not supposed to be involved in this kind of case. They’re not in any way made for this kind of arrest. But it seems they were getting orders from above; I learnt that it was on the orders of the Attorney General of the Federation (Abubakar Malami)”, Danladi told Saharareporters.
The DSS allegedly obtained a fraudulent warrant of detention from an incompetent court of jurisdiction, Upper Area Court IV, presided by Magistrate Ibrahim Wulanda.
“Normally the practice is that you don’t obtain a warrant to further detain a suspect without presenting them in court. In this case the magistrate who granted the warrant later said he was manipulated or misled.
“He regretted his action, maybe he was influenced by the DSS. I learnt the magistrate said they got the order without giving him full details of the matter”, Barr Danladi said.
The applicants, who are currently locked up in Kuje prison, were part of the inmates who escaped after the facility was attacked by terrorists recently.
SaharaReporters, had on July 7, 2022, reported that one of the inmates who fled Kuje Correctional Centre after the prison facility was attacked Tuesday night had spoken about the attack; how the inmates were freed by terrorists and why he decided to turn himself in.
“So immediately after now, we’ll be going back to Kuje because we know we’re innocent of the charges brought against us and we have confidence in the justice system; we’ll be vindicated at the end of the trial”, Eli had said.
Eli and 14 fellow applicants had filed an application seeking the enforcement of their fundamental right to freedom at federal High Court in Yola.
Justice Anka who grated the substituted service order, fixed September 26, 2022 for hearing of the application.