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Businessman sues EFCC, others for defamation, harassment over Swiss Golden



A Nigerian, Dickson Nonso Onuchukwu, has dragged the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Inspector-General of Police (IG) and the Lagos Commissioner of Police to court for alleged defamation of character, harassment and unlawful detention.

Onuchukwu, who had been arrested several times by the security agencies, was recently paraded by the EFCC together with one Augustine Emenike and a Russian, Max Lobaty as the faces behind Swiss Golden International Company.

The commission, which described the online gold networking business as a ponzi scheme, had declared on all its social media handles that the sum of N216 million was recovered from the company following petitions by some Kano residents that they were scammed of their money.

But in a twist of events, Onuchukwu, who said he was first arrested by the EFCC in November at his office (Swiss Golden Africa) in Ikeja, said he had provided documentary evidence to the agency that he was not an affiliate of Swiss Golden International. He explained that he was also a customer like those complaining that they were defrauded, adding that the difference was that he took the business seriously and had been networking, growing in it.

Onuchukwu, who is seeking a billion naira as damages from the security agencies, said he was harassed, arrested and unlawfully detained by operatives of the Federal Criminal Investigation and Intelligence  (FCIID), Alagbon, Ikoyi, between March 6 and bailed after providing his surety. According to him, the harassment and arrests violated his rights under Sections 34(1), 35(1) and 41(1) of the 1999 constitution as amended.

Through his counsel, Anthony Omaghomi, Onuchukwu in suit FHCL/CS/679/18 prayed a Federal High Court in Lagos to declare the harassment and arrests he was subjected to by the EFCC and Police as unlawful, illegal, oppressive and unconstitutional, adding that they violated his right to dignity, personal liberty and freedom of movement.

Onuchukwu sought an order of perpetual injunction restraining the respondents from further arrest, detention, harassment, invitation, parade or malicious prosecution with respect to Swiss Golden International especially as regards to any claim or business agreement made directly by anybody or group of persons to the foreign company.

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