On Tuesday, a Federal High Court in Abuja dismissed a suit filed by the Federal Government of Nigeria to extradite a Nigerian citizen, Andrew Chidiebere Ibe, to the United States of America for trial on wire fraud charges.
The case filed on behalf of the Federal Government by the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), was dismissed for lack of diligence.
Following the repeated absence of the AGF or any legal practitioner from his office or private chamber to appear in court to prosecute the Extradition Suit, Justice Inyang Ekwo dismissed the case.
Malami, in the suit FHC/ABJ/CS/456/2022, asked the Federal High Court for an order allowing the Nigerian businessman to be extradited to the United States following his indictment for wire fraud.
Malami claimed that the suspect was to be tried by the American government for the alleged fraud and that an extradition request had been served on the Nigerian government in accordance with the Extradition Act of 2004.
The AGF also stated that the suspect faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted of the 11 charges.
However, the AGF office has shown no serious commitment to prosecuting the Extradition Suit since its filing.
Neither the AGF nor any legal practitioner appeared during Tuesday’s proceedings to move an ex-parte application filed alongside the suit seeking the suspect’s immediate arrest and detention pending the grant of extradition against him.
The suit was dismissed by Justice Ekwo, who was dissatisfied with the continued absence of the AGF and any lawyer to represent him.
Following the indictment of the businessman by the USA Federal Bureau of Investigations, the US government brought the Extradition request through its Embassy in Nigeria.
Susanne Elmilady’s request was based on Extractable Offenses under Article 3 (18) of the Extradition Treaty between the United States of America and Nigeria.