The Anambra State Police Command has reacted to an allegation of extortion and unlawful detention which occurred at the Onitsha Central Police Station by ordering an immediate investigation into the matter.
A press statement by the state police spokesman, Tochukwu Ikenga, on Saturday, stated that the police have vowed to uncover and punish the operatives involved in such “ignominious act”.
A human rights activist and Coordinator of Behind Bars Human Rights Foundation, Harrison Gwamnishu, had narrated an incident of arrest, extortion and unlawful detention, carried out by the operatives of the Anambra State Police command, on his social media handle.
Gwamnishu said a man identified as Chidiebere was on July 4, arrested after he left ShopRite Mall, where he had gone to make purchases.
He said the policemen involved, including one Harrison Emerenini, saw him with an iPhone and arrested him.
According to him, the victim was later extorted to the tune of N600,500, after he was threatened to be labelled as an IPOB member.
The human rights activists said Chidiebere was arrested at 7:45pm, thrown into the cell and was released at about 2am, after paying the said amount.
He added that after the intervention by his group, the victim was paid the extorted money in full.
He urged the police commissioner to look into their complaint, investigate and prosecute the officers involved.
Reacting to the allegation, Ikenga said the commissioner of police, Echeng Echeng, has ordered an investigation into the matter.
He said, “The attention of Anambra State Police Command has been drawn to a trending report from social media on extorted but recovered money from a policeman in the Command.
“The Commissioner of Police, CP Echeng Echeng has directed the Assistant Commissioner of Police in charge of X-Squad to investigate and unravel the circumstances surrounding the incident.
“The CP, who frowned at such an act, reiterated that the command under his watch will not tolerate any form of unprofessional conduct by police personnel.
“He also urged the citizens to report any police alterations/misconducts to X Squad and Public Complaints Bureau PCB of the Command.”