Austrian Businessman Initiates Contempt Proceedings against EFCC Boss

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By Tobi Soniyi

An Austrian businessman, Wolgang Reinl, ‎detained by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, has asked an Abuja High Court to commit the Acting Chairman of the commission, Ibrahim Magu, for allegedly refusing to comply with a court order directing the commission to release his international passport and other property to him.

Reinl’s lawyer, Afam Osigwe, filed form 48, which is a notice of consequences of the disobedience to court’s order, on Thursday.

The court had ordered the commission to pay Reinl the sum of N10 million for his unlawful detention by the EFCC for over two months.

Justice Peter Affen had on April 20th, 2016, held that the detention of the applicant at the EFCC (respondent) office at Wuse 2 Abuja from December 28th,2015 to 5th February 2016 was unlawful, unconstitutional and constituted a gross violation of his fundamental right to dignity of the human person and personal liberty which is contrary to Section 34(1) and 35(1) and (6) of the Constitution of the Federal Government of Nigeria 1999 as amended.

The court also declared that the seizure of the applicant’s passport by the EFCC constituted a gross violation of his right to freedom of movement contrary to Article 12(2) of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights.

The judge consequently ordered: “the respondent (EFCC) shall release forthwith the applicant’s International Passport seized or confiscated in the wake of his arrest and detention and de-list him from their watch list or no fly list.

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