Lawyer tells court to stop extradition of Air Peace boss, Onyema, to US

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A human rights lawyer, Johnmary Jideobi, has urged the Federal High Court, Abuja, to restrain the Federal Government from extraditing the Chairman, Air Peace Airline Company, Chief Allen Onyema, to the United States (US) for trial in an alleged fraud.

 

Jideobi, in a suit with reference no: FHC/ABJ/CS/1446/2019 filed, on Nov. 25, also sought the court order barring government, its agencies, servants of privies from giving effect to any extradition request from any country of the world, especially the US, anchored on any indictment or charges reflecting in substance or similar fact as contained in the US extradition request against Onyema.

 

The Abuja-based legal practitioner prayed the court to stop the move if such request was made by the US government. He also requested for an order of the court restraining any agency of government with prosecutorial powers as represented by the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) either by themselves, their servants, privies, assigns or any other person or authority acting under any concerts from attempting to use or seeking to harass, threaten, arrest or inviting or arresting Onyema in relations to civil aviation contract he entered with American authorities through his companies.

 

The court was also urged to make any other order or orders as circumstances or situation might warrant. In a 6-paragraph affidavit in support of the suit, the applicant claimed to have come from Anambra with Onyema and that he had known him as a reputable business man in the aviation sector over the years.

 

The lawyer averred that the freedom of Onyema had become endangered in the country and likely to be curtailed in the circumstances of the alleged fraud indictment. The affidavit was deposed to by one Martin’s Okoye, a legal practitioner.

 

Jideobi, therefore, asked the court to make declaration that the Federal Government had no power to abridge the fundamental right of Onyema to freedom of movement as enshrined under Section 35 of the 1999 Constitution.

 

Onyema was said to have been indicted for fraud by the American government. No date has been fixed for hearing of the suit.