A Nigerian doctor named Obinna Obeta, residing in the UK has been accused of plotting with former Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu and his wife, Beatrice, to traffic a homeless man into the UK to harvest a kidney for their daughter.
Obeta, 50, appeared before the Bexley Magistrate court on Thursday, July 13, and was charged under the Modern Slavery Act with arranging the travel of a 21-year-old man with a view to him being exploited between August last year and this May.
A second charge alleges he conspired with the former Senate President to arrange or facilitate the travel of the man with a view to him being exploited, namely organ harvesting.
Nigeriana had earlier reported that the Ekweremadus are being tried in the UK on charges of organ harvesting after a 21-year-old man, David Ukpo, they brought to the UK approached the police with claims of being treated as a slave and also claiming that he was ”15” years old. The Nigerian politician and his wife were arrested in the UK on June 21 after flying into Heathrow from Turkey.
It was later discovered that David lied about his age as the biodata on his Nigerian bank accounts and the National Identity Management Commission NIMC indicated he was 21 years old.
Obeta was on Thursday charged with arranging or facilitating the travel of another person with a view to exploitation and conspiring together with Ike Ekweremadu.
Prosecutor Tim Probert-Wood had previously told the court that the case involved ‘exploitation and the harvesting of an organ.’ The Prosecuting counsel told the court that the Ekweremadus had planned to have David’s kidney removed so it could be given to their daughter.
”The case began on 5 May 2022 when the complainant presented himself at Staines Police Station and claimed he had been transported to this country for the purpose of his kidney being removed.
He arrived on 20th February 2022 and was taken to Royal Free Hospital where tests were conducted. For the purpose he was there he did not consent to the taking of his kidney.
He returned to the house he was staying and his treatment changed dramatically. He described being treated effectively as a slave.” Probert-Wood said
However, counsel to Mr. Ekweremadu, Martin Hicks, QC, insisted that the former Senate President and his wife did no wrong
‘We deny that there was any exploitation or any intent to do so. The argument will be factual denial.’
All three defendants, who are in custody, are due to appear at the Old Bailey on August 4.