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Lawyer Speaks On Maltreatment Of Suspects

An Ikorodu based legal practitioner, Mrs Christy Elekwachi, has urged security agencies in Nigeria to desist from acts tantamount to maltreatment of suspects.

Elekwachi told our reporter on Thursday that reforms were still needed to ensure prompt arraignment of suspects in Nigeria.

She was of the view that unusual detention of a suspect amounted to gross violation of the criminal justice procedure of Nigeria and constitutionalism.

Elekwachi added that such detention was also against the rule of law and the rights of the affected suspects.

“It is ultimately anti-society for security agencies to detain a suspect for a long time and bring them before a competent court of jurisdiction over a week after their arrest.

“But many of our security agencies are actually guilty of this because of not doing a thorough investigation.

“It is even more annoying in cases that the suspect was caught with the evidence; like in drug peddling cases and yet will languish in detention for weeks before being arraigned in court,’’ she said.

The lawyer urged judges in criminal cases to frown more at the time suspects were kept in detention so as to further discourage the practice.

“I also urge the high commands of our security outfits to reprimand their officers that detain a suspect more than the duration allowed in law,’’ she added.

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