The Lagos State Police Command has arrested five operatives of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad for allegedly harassing a businessman in the state for bribe after seizing his company documents.
The state Police Public Relations Officer, SP Chike Oti, said the men were attached to the Ipakodo base of SARS.The culprits, according to him, are Inspector Taiwo Omojope, Inspector Arigidi Ebibor, Sergeant Rotimi Adesoba, Sergeant Olalekan Olakunle and Sergeant Friday Oni.
The businessman, Immanuel Ibe-Anyanwu, had gone to a Zenith Bank branch at Ago-Palace Way, Okota, for a transaction when he was approached by one of the cops who took him to where their operational vehicle was parked.
The victim had alleged that after searching his car and perusing his documents without finding anything incriminating, the policemen ordered him to enter the vehicle and take them to his office in the Ikoyi area of the state.
After some arguments, a resident was said to have mediated, urging the policemen to release the 37-year-old.
The cops were alleged to have demanded money from him, as they turned down a telephone call from the police command headquarters.
Ibe-Anyanwu was said to have sneaked into the toilet of the bank on the pretext of going to withdraw money for the cops.
The policemen reportedly removed the number plate of his car after waiting for about two hours.
The victim said he was forced to enter his car and speed off after bank workers asked him to leave the premises.
The state Commissioner of Police, Edgal Imohimi, was reported to have ordered that the policemen be identified and arrested.
The police spokesperson, Oti, had said preliminary investigation showed that the team was led by one Inspector Jude Akhoyemta of SARS, Ikeja.
But on Tuesday, he absolved Akhoyemta of complicity in the crime, saying the culprits were from the Ipakodo base of SARS
Meanwhile, a group, Network on Police Reform in Nigeria, has commended the police for swiftly acting on the allegations.He said with deterrent punishments, the police would regain the confidence of Nigerians.