Court slams EFCC with N1m fine for illegal seizure of bizman’s Mercedes car


A Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court has ordered the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to release forthwith a Mercedes Benz car belonging to a businessman, Emmanuel Yashim and pay him N1 million damages.

The affected Mercedes Benz GLC 300 car was seized from Yashim two years ago by the EFCC.

Delivering judgment in a suit filed by Yashim seeking for enforcement of his fundamental rights, the trial high court judge, Justice Peter Kekemeke held that the anti-graft agency violated Yashim’s rights to own property.

The applicant in a suit marked CV/590/2022 had prayed the court to compel the EFCC to pay him N10 million for impounding his car since 2022 as damages for breach of his right.

The applicant through his counsel, Nwachukwu Ibegbu further prayed the court to order EFCC to release his Mercedes Benz GLC 300 in its custody since Nov. 22, 2022.

The applicant prayed the court to declare that the continuous holding of the car without stating the offence amounted to breach of his rights.

He therefore prayed the court to declare such an act by the anti-graft Agency as unconstitutional and illegal.

After listening to both parties, Justice Kekemeke held that the continued detention of the applicant’s vehicle by the EFCC is unconstitutional and illegal therefore a breach of the applicant’s fundamental rights.

He therefore ordered the respondent to release the vehicle forthwith.

He added that the respondent’s agents, privies and servants whosoever called are restrained from further re-arresting or impounding the applicant’s vehicle except in accordance with the order of court.

“The respondent is ordered to pay a sum of N1million as compensation for the breach of the applicant’s right to own a property,” Kekemeke ruled.

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