Ben Ezechime, Enugu
A defendant, Onyekachi Agbo, has told the Federal High Court sitting in Enugu that he wrote his confessional statement at the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) office involuntarily.
The defendant, who stated this during his defence claimed that having watched EFCC torturing another suspect while in the Commission’s cell made him to say whatever they wanted him to say.
He said: “My Lord, the statement I made at EFCC on Sept. 17, 21, 22 and 27, 2021 was written out of fear of being tortured like other suspects.
“They denied my family and lawyer access to see me even when I told them that I cannot make my statement without my lawyer.”
The defendant, who lives at Abakpa Nike Road, Enugu, said he was arrested by the anti-graft agency for alleged internet fraud while squatting with his friends at New Haven, Enugu.
“I am a graphics designer and a student at the Institute of Management and Technology (IMT), Enugu.
“I told them that everything found in my phone was what I use for graphics design work.
“The gmail they found in my phone was what I used to do the work and they kept threatening to put me back in the cell if l fail to write my statement the way they wanted,” he told court.
He further said he was induced to write the statements, adding that he missed his examinations because of the arrest.
“My Lord, I am now a drop out as a result,” he said.
Earlier during cross examination, the EFCC Investigation Officer, Mr Zechariah Liberty, said the defendant was brought to their office on Sept. 16, 2021, adding that he and his friends were subjected to forensic analysis.
He said after explaining to him, the defendant wrote his statements voluntarily in an open office.
Meanwhile, lawyer to the defendant, Mr Patrick Nwosi, also told the court that he was denied access to the defendant at EFCC office.
The presiding Judge, Justice F.O.G Ogunbanjo, however, adjourned the matter till March 23, for adoption of written addresses.