EXCLUSIVE: How SSS, Police clashed during botched raid on judge’s home in Port Harcourt

Nigerian_SSS

An attempt by the State Security Service to raid the residence of a federal judge, Mohammed Liman, in Port Harcourt early Saturday, resulted in a prolonged standoff that almost turned deadly, several officials have told PREMIUM TIMES.

The sources said the SSS clashed with the police as they tried unsuccessfully to gain access into Mr. Liman’s home. The SSS reportedly acted on a tip-off that the judge was in custody of $2 million cash.

The officials said at some point Governor Nyesom Wike, who arrived the scene shortly after the start of the operations, vowed that he would rather be killed than allow the SSS operatives access the judge’s home.

Mr. Wike later said in a statement that he would not allow such “impunity” take place under his watch as governor.

“He is not a criminal and he is not an armed robber,” he said of the judge. “If the person has committed an offence, invite him. It is only when he refuses to honour the invitation that you can adopt this commando style.”

Mr. Wike added: “It doesn’t matter what it will cost. When you talk about liberty, sacrifices must be made. We are not trying to stop an arrest. All we are saying is that things must be done decently and in line with the rule of law.”

Our sources said when SSS operatives arrived at the residence of the judge at Number 35 Forces Avenue in Port Harcourt, they were prevented from gaining entry.

As agents made efforts to enter the house, Mr. Liman reportedly contacted the governor, who promptly raced to the scene.

The governor reached out to the commissioner of police, Francis Odesanya, who arrived the scene with three truckloads of police men, an official said.

“When the commissioner arrived there and saw the SSS director, he did not withdraw. Instead, he sided with the governor and together they provided cover for the judge, against SSS agents,” one source said.

The officials said the standoff dragged on for hours, and later, under the cover of police, a vehicle left the building. SSS said it believed the vehicle conveyed the $2 million.

“As the vehicle left, SSS vehicle followed but was outmaneuvered,” the source said.

By 4 a.m., over three hours after the start of the operation, SSS agents withdrew from the scene after receiving instructions to do so.

The SSS alluded to that incident in its statement late Saturday.

The service said the operation was to recover $2 million from the judge’s home.

“In one of the States where the Service operations were conducted, credible intelligence revealed that the Judge had Two Million United States Dollars ($2,000,000 USD) stashed in his house,” the SSS said while explaining its nationwide raid of senior judges’ homes.

“When he was approached for a due search to be conducted, he in concert with the State Governor, mobilised thugs against the Service team.

“The team restrained itself in the face of unbridled provocative activities by those brought in by the governor.

“Unfortunately, the Judge and Governor also engaged the tacit support of a sister security agency,” the SSS said.

The sources said Mr. Odesanya might have colluded with Mr. Wike to move the fund away from the house.

But both the spokesman to Mr. Wike, Oraye Franklyn, and the police spokesman in Rivers, Omoni Nnamdi, denied the allegations against their respective principals.

“If we are to assume that they are right, which court authorised the arrest of the judge and why at the dead of the night? Had the judge been formally invited?” Mr. Frankly said.

Mr. Nnamdi said the allegations were too dangerous to comprehend and called for caution.

“We only moved in to broker peace between the governor and the SSS people and there was no way the commissioner could have done such a thing,” Mr. Nnamdi said.

“We need to be careful when throwing up allegations that could cause a crisis.”


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  • Mufu Ola

    The Police Commisioner is staring at compulsory retirement or dismissal.Just bcos of Wike, the roughneck.

    • max

      You guys can joke

  • tom

    that is my Governor. Wike thank you so much, that is what is expected of a state chief security officer.

  • dami

    either way…the judge has lost his job.

    • max

      For your mind

      • dami

        So soon people forget…you remember justice salami and Jonathan and tinubu?

  • abc

    Gov. wike and the Igbo police commissioner are interfering with arrest of a hausa judge of federal high court from state DSS director (not kidnappers) in the dead of night. haba something is wrong seriously.

    • True Nigeria

      This is the question the Buhari bashing bigots have failed to address. Tell Governor Wike and his co-travelers in this adventure of shielding criminally-minded judges to rise and defend in like fashion an innocent woman that is arrested and beaten up by police officers for failing to pay N1,000 development levy in his state. It is all about corrupt governors colluding with corrupt police commissioners to prevent a corrupt judge from being taken in to face justice, and to hide the $2, 000,000. What a bad day for Nigeria?

    • wode

      @abc, point aptly made. At that level, sectionalism is not a subject of consideration. To them, family ties of corruption is stronger than any other consideration whatsoever. They have their allies and accomplices across the nation. They know themselves.

      For the gullible ones that always fan the amber, and only see through the window, of sectionalism, there is a lesson there for you to learn.

  • God help us

    Nonsense, making silly excuses. Was it money that EFCC wanted to recover when they invaded Fani Kayode house. Military rule back in 9ja

  • Spoken word

    the police in this country is a mess

    • Burning Spear

      Is this not the same mumu unthinking MEND–that supported Bingo Buhari before and after the elections—–against Jonathan and the Ijaw Nation–? Honest, I am laughing my head off——right now——–The very MEND that has been fighting the Avengers—-via the Itsekiris and Urhobos? Now Bingo Buhari is jubilating thanking the south African government that refused to sell arms to us to fight boko haram————-for sending Ijaw man Okah to the gallows—————————–yiiiiiiiiiipeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee——————-ntor!!!!!!!!!!!!!This was the MEND that gave it all to Buhari—————-Disowned Jonathan—and swore never to support—-Jonathan—-I had told the Ijaws in MEND that Buhari will never negotiate with any Ijaw man over the crisis in the Niger delta—never!!! Aware the tripod has no regard for the Ijaw Nation_–all Nigeria wants are the oil wells in the SS–period not their person—because to them those from the SS stink like stockfish—-The so-called Aaron team was a fabu by government–designed to deceive the Ijaws–It was a waste of time——————-Look–now nko?———-Besides this evil act by Buhari and the Apes in APC————–every living Nigerian should be held responsible for helping the CIA to impose a wicked, evil-minded insensitive–Luciferic lying–dishonest thieving Fulanis man like Bingo Buhari-on us————-A Fulani despot who is-filled with egoistic religious Jihadist sentiments against the Ijaw Nation———Happily–the demonic soul of Bingo Buhari has an expiring date with God and History——He will soon face the judgement of God-in Nigeria–Just like 30 years ago when he was sent to prison in Benin–Buhari is a National disgrace—————-Animals

      • Sir Demo

        Stop rubbing ur idiocity in our faces goon.

    • NinjaK

      ….so is the Daura Security Services….. and your President!

  • RestructureNigeriaNow

    Premiumtimesng now working hand in hand with DSS and Buhari pumping out super stories. Your days are numbered. Darker may last a while but light shall always consume it.

  • Burning Spear

    Is this not the same mumu unthinking MEND–that supported Bingo Buhari before and after the elections—–against Jonathan and the Ijaw Nation–? Honest, I am laughing my head off——right now——–The very MEND that has been fighting the Avengers—-via the Itsekiris and Urhobos? Now Bingo Buhari is jubilating thanking the south African government that refused to sell arms to us to fight boko haram————-for sending Ijaw man Okah to the gallows—————————–yiiiiiiiiiipeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee——————-ntor!!!!!!!!!!!!!This was the MEND that gave it all to Buhari—————-Disowned Jonathan—and swore never to support—-Jonathan—-I had told the Ijaws in MEND that Buhari will never negotiate with any Ijaw man over the crisis in the Niger delta—never!!! Aware the tripod has no regard for the Ijaw Nation_–all Nigeria wants are the oil wells in the SS–period not their person—because to them those from the SS stink like stockfish—-The so-called Aaron team was a fabu by government–designed to deceive the Ijaws–It was a waste of time——————-Look–now nko?———-Besides this evil act by Buhari and the Apes in APC————–every living Nigerian should be held responsible for helping the CIA to impose a wicked, evil-minded insensitive–Luciferic lying–dishonest thieving Fulanis man like Bingo Buhari-on us————-A Fulani despot who is-filled with egoistic religious Jihadist sentiments against the Ijaw Nation———Happily–the demonic soul of Bingo Buhari has an expiring date with God and History——He will soon face the judgement of God-in Nigeria–Just like 30 years ago when he was sent to prison in Benin–Animals

  • Profy

    I think something is fishy between Wike and this judge. Even the commissioner of police is involve. This issue should be further investigated

    • vagabonds in power

      another buhari baboon—are u not ahsmaed of buharis acts monkey

    • max

      That is your thoughts because your mind is already warped

  • Time 4 d army to sack Buhari

    Wonders shall never end–in Nigeria————look at Bingo Buhari—–who snubbed the same Nigerians he lied to by refusing to appear before an Ibo Judge– Justice Oputa Truth and Reconciliation Panel. Despite the fact that Buhari knew how important reconciliation is to the stability of democracy. Buhari has never apologized at anytime for refusing to appear before an Ibo High court Judge–Late Justice Opeta–can any from the SS do such to a Fulani Alkali Judge and get away with it–?———–Enough of the insult by the Fulanis against the people of Rivers state-and by extension the entire SS————–

    Aware Buhari executed Lawal Ojuolape (30), Bernard Ogedengbe (29) and Bartholomew Owoh an Ibo man(26). To put it quite plainly, one of those three – Ogedengbe – was executed for a crime that did not carry a capital forfeit at the time it was committed. and At the time Ogedengbe committed the crime it did not carry that punishment. If we must live as civilized citizens we must go by the Rules of Law. Article 11.2 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights reads: “No one shall be held guilty of any penal offence on account of any act or omission WHICH DID NOT CONSTITUTE A PENAL OFFENCE, under national or international law at the time when it was committed. NOR SHALL A HEAVIER PUNISHMENT BE IMPOSED THAN THE ONE THAT WAS APPLICABLE AT THE TIME THE PENAL OFFENCE WAS COMMITTED. Killing people with retroactive laws is not the civilised thing to do – and for as long as we will have people who refuse to see the truth only because their heroes are inching to rule when they have not purged themselves of the crimes they committed against Humanity we will continue to wallow in misery under the rule of the Fulanis and Yorubas ati their Ibo surrogates in APC.

  • Sir Demo

    If Buhari failed to arrest the Police Commisioner and fired the AIG within 48 hours then he is still a sissy man and bound to fail.

    • Benny

      It snowed in Ikeja today. Kindly help spread the ‘breaking news’ . Twat!

  • amazing2012

    What is wrong with that ? To call him so that he can hide the exhibit ?
    Why police don’t tell others to come and report ? Because he is a judge then he is above the law ?
    That police should dismissed for conniving with the suspect !

    • Benny

      Not amazing about you except you obvious stupidity. Even in North Korea, you don’t apply such crude and medieval style in fighting corruption.

      • Smart

        You really don’t know what is North Korea

      • amazing2012

        So when you want to search suspect house, you will inform him and expect to still find exhibit in the house ? You are not OK !

  • emmanuel

    We are already in a state of Anarchy and Nigeria should just end now. Any attempt to carry it on may lead to a bitter crises.
    Governors harassed, account frozen, Government houses invaded, peoples doors broken down by citizens who are not armed.
    We should simply have a military regime than a vicious civilian operating a despotic and tyranical regime.
    NLC, TUC, ASUU, NANS, Civil Society groups. All judges and Justices down tool
    The NJC has not been doing badly lately by disciplining Judges, so how did the DSS takeover Nigeria?

    • Charles Coteen

      It is allowed in law to acquire exhibits even by illegal means. The dss acted wisely and we are happy that even the judges are now touchable

      • Darlington

        Insufferable hypocrite! Buhari will never end well, mark my words.

        • Smart

          Or you will never end well

          • delta K

            Your useless father and mother will not end well

      • share Idea

        If you acquire exhibits illegally, what will you do with it under democracy? can you convict a suspect in court of law with established illegal exhibit?

        • Ikenna Okwuchi

          illegally obtained evidence is admissible under the Nigerian law of evidence as long as the court considers it relevant to the case in question.

          • bugwu

            if they bring money to court as evidence how can you proof that the money came from the Judge’s house

          • Ikenna Okwuchi

            Therein lies the foolishness of the approach by the current incompetent imbeciles in power.

          • Scatter

            Hmmm … which Act of parliament is that? The Evidence Act? Please, quote the relevant section. Thank you.

      • max

        Please don’t display your crass ignorance in public. You don’t acquire exhibit illegally if not it won’t stand the test of time

      • bugwu

        There wisdom is a sham

      • Scatter

        Oga Sir! “Acquire exhibits even by illegal means”? Which law is that? Passed by which parliament and when?

  • Arabakpura

    Assuming the judge was not in good terms with Wike and he decided to call for Wike’s help, would he have gone? We will never know but that judge is a federal judge and not a state judge!

    • bugwu

      Is it a crime to be in good terms with the Gov of a state???

      • Arabakpura

        You are true Nigerian; returning question with question! That judge is a federal judge and has no business with the governor apart from being the resident of that state for now; now, this led to my question!

  • wode

    “The officials said at some point Governor Nyesom Wike, who arrived the scene shortly after the start of the operations, vowed that he would rather be killed than allow the SSS operatives access the judge’s home.”

    Hmmm… You may want to ask what is the interest of the Governor in protecting the Judge at the middle of the night. A $2m cash was just delivered to the Judge and that’s one of the targets of the Security agents. Wike knows the implication of the security agents meeting the money in the apartment. So, he had to put everything about him on the line to whisk away the money.

    The God that brought Moses and made sure His will was done despite the foreknowledge by Pharaoh as well as his antics and machination has brought a leader that would get God’s will accomplished in this country. Nigeria would be great again by the grace of God.

    • Roland O. Chima

      @wode:disqus: Evidence retrieved; despite an indelicate military operation, show the bedrooms
      of Supreme Court Justices and of High Court Judges make up a crime scene. It becomes
      hard to condemn the means President Buhari selected and approve the result of the cache
      of illegal cash under the beds of the Judges equaling an amount found at Bureau de Change.

      But It is more to jump to immediately conclusion because the two Supreme Court Judges are
      now in prison custody awaiting arraignment on Monday. Until one hears the other side of the
      story by hearing the testimony of the Supreme Court Judges, one should take the SSS story
      with just the right amount of salt – and that should be a pinch of salt and nothing more as yet.

      • wode

        I loved that. I agree with you. I only doubt why the apartments would be visited if there are no such grievous exhibits in there. Why not your house and why not mine? The proverbial smoke that accompanies fire still remains evergreen.

        • onyearmy

          Wonder no more! The smoke is that he’s the same judge who refused to do the APC ‘ S bidding in the River’s INEC case. That was the fire and this is the smoke.

    • eshe_70@yahoo.com

      Wike has turned Rivers State to a state of gangsters

      • bugwu

        We are operating a federal system of Govt. Gov Wike is right

    • Scatter

      Where did you read that the SSS met Gov Wike at the judge’s residence? The SSS story is a cock and bull one. They were at the resid? ence, where US$2m (not US$2,000) was brought out of the house, loaded into a vehicle, and driven off — while they were soundly asleep on the line of duty? Charge them with negligence, incompetence, dereliction of duty, and conspiracy to undermine lawful operational order!

  • wode

    “Unfortunately, the Judge and Governor also engaged the tacit support of a sister security agency,” the SSS said.
    The sources said Mr. Odesanya might have colluded with Mr. Wike to move the fund away from the house.

    This is one of the reasons why the President would find it very difficult to trust most of these security officers into position of authority. They are all compromised. It is a big shame!

    • eshe_70@yahoo.com

      They should retire Rivers State CP

      • Man_Enough

        he should also be prosecuted.

      • bugwu

        Did they inform him that they are coming under his jurisdiction to make arrest??? His job is to prevent everybody in Rivers state including the Judge

  • evidence

    That is how they recovered trillions on the pages of newspapers and Buhari still went ahead to borrow N1 trillion in less than two years and plans to borrow more.
    This is how they distract their gullible supporters from the fact that tyrant Buhari is on a vendetta mission and does not care if Nigeria goes up in flames. ‎

    • Burbank

      Even Putin’s Russia borrows US$1.75 billion

      rbth com/business/2016/05/30/why-is-russia-borrowing-money-on-the-foreign-markets_598703

      • evidence

        Why would Buhari borrow when he claims he has recovered trillions of loot?

        • Gideons

          It’s because you don’t know how govt.runs can the trillions of naira he recovered be enough to prosecute our budget?. He cannot spend the money for it’s will serves as exhibit against the criminal in the law court.

          • evidence

            How does a govt run? A tyrant that has no respect for the rule of law and our Constitution wants to now follow the rule of law to spend the trillions he recovered on the pages of newspapers? The same looted funds he promised to use to fund his padded budget?
            Better start using your brain. ‎

          • bugwu

            Tell that to Zombies

        • Burbank

          The US Treasury has far much more money than the loot Buhari had recovered but still Obama is borrowing.

        • Burbank

          Asked the arrested judges where did they get the money, if not stolen from you and me.

      • bugwu

        So what happened to the 30trillin dollars they want to recover???

        • Burbank

          $30tr?
          That’s more than the money available in the US, Europe, Saudi, Dubai combined!
          Check your claims please.

    • share Idea

      You forgot to adde that GE was investing $2.1B on Nigeria railway… this what you get from government of liars for the liars and propagandist. Nigeria we hail thee

      • bugwu

        Yesoooooooooooo and GE came out to deny that stating that they are investing $105m

    • eshe_70@yahoo.com

      Corruption is so much imbedded in our DNA that we now support and worship it

    • bugwu

      Point blank!!!!

  • Opekete

    If the DSS come to raid a carpenters house or a mechanic’s home and he called the governor in the middle of the night, will he drive there with a contingent of police operatives including the commissioner of police? If the DSS can raid the home of ordinary citizen on the strength of evidence from interrogation of other suspects what makes the judge whose name has been mentioned in the commission of a crime a super citizen? I am sorry for people that support the impunity being perpetrated by the rich and the connected in this country. I am even more concerned about uninformed citizens that continue to support these criminals in power just because they are their kinsmen. The billion stolen by these rogues in power is the billion that would have been spent to educate your children and my children. Until we unite against these rogues either they are our kinsmen or not, the dream of lasting progress shall remain a fleeting illusion to pursued but never attained.

    • Oyi

      Mention one of those in power now that has no corruption allegations. Due process must be followed, we are not in military era.

  • 47Code

    First the Commissioner of Police should be sack and locked up. Honestly what we need is a serious revolution in Nigeria. the rich versus the poor. the kind of revolution that took place in Russia.
    If a poor man steals N1,000, police will not invite him, they will go to his house, beat him up and take him to the station and lock him up. But when a rich man steals billions of dollars that was met to procure weapons to fight BK, they are telling us to respect him, invite him and wait for him to honour the invitation. They have forgotten that the same man sent other people’s children to war front to die. The Judge is an example of a failed legal and Judicial system in Nigeria. If this has happened, then we do not have a Country anymore. We should bring down the entire system. This is the story of Animal Farm.

    • muazu wali

      I fully agree with your views. For the first time in this country government agencies are allowed to operate in accordance with the laws that established them and without interference by the presidency or political interests. We should allow the system to work. Buhari gave them the courage to pursue those who for years were committing criminal acts scot free. Not any more!

      • bugwu

        Oerate under which law??? because you are not involved then it is right?

        • muazu wali

          Under the laws establishing the seurity agencies of course!

    • bugwu

      That is not how democracy works. Go to ghana and find how the Juges were sacked in april all evidences were overwhelming without all shameless approach by shameful Govt

  • Harry

    Lies and more lies. What does one expect from Daura Secret Service? You can be rest assured that there was no 2 million USD anywhere. They trailed the supposed car and they were outmaneuvered. Tell that to the birds.

    • bugwu

      Those people are fools then the shold hv bursted the tyre. Lies are too many hear

  • YUSUF

    DRASTIC MEASURES ARE REQUIRED FOR CERTAIN SITUATIONS. A SITUATION WHERE CUSTODIANS OF OUR LAWS ARE BRAZENLY RAPING THE LAW AND WANT TO HIDE UNDER SAME LAW CANNOT BUT ATTRACT EQUAL BRAZENNESS. I COMMEND THE SSS AND SUGGEST THE RIVERS STATE GOVERNOR SHOULD BE SANCTIONED IN ONE WAY OR THE OTHER PENDING WHEN HE LOSES IMMUNITY. AS FOR THE STATE COMMISSIONER OF POLICE HE SHOULD BE DISMISSED AND PROSECUTED FOR OBSTRUCTING THE COURSE OF JUSTICE.AS THE ORDINARY NIGERIANS THAT ARE SUPPORTING THE BRAZEN OBSTRUCTION, I PITY THEIR IGNORANCE.

    • bugwu

      You cannot come to a state even a division and make arrests without involving the commissioner. What SSS did was pure madness. At most the IG should be involved and use his authority to tell the commisioner to stay out of the case as it is being handled from Hdqters

  • George

    This is how ABACHA MADNESS started and the Yorubas and Mallams then supported the evil Abacha until he turned his madness toward them.

    tHE North and the West later paid heaviest price for supported Abacha. God of yesterday never changed.

    • Tunji Olarewaju

      I thought it was a yibo boy that organized the one -million -man march for Abacha’s life presidency, while Yorubas formed PRONACO.Stop turning history on its head because you are ashamed of your collective ignoble past, biamonkey

    • HAMZA

      …..Abacha was a great African leader. Despite all the bad he did, he stabilised the economy and had a better constitutional answer to the Nigerian political problems (like the 6 geo-political zones he created) than GEJ AND PMB put together. People call him names because he is not alive and around…..there live people that are more dangerous than the late Abacha, but the wailing hypocrites would not call out their names because they do not want the truth!!!

  • Lafayette

    Search no further. It was Justice Liman that gave legal approval to Wikes PDP caretaker contraption after 2 Courts of coordinate jurisdiction forbade the Party from organising such charade. Wike surely had to protect his investment. God help Nigeria.

  • Man_Enough

    those against this action should tell us how on earth can you catch a criminal red handed except by the element of surprise. they are judges for goodness sake and are capable of defending themselves at any court. anybody against their arrest is an enemy of nigeria and a supporter of evil.