A State High Court in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, has convicted and sentenced two former members of the disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad of the Nigerian Police Force to death for extra-judicial killings.
The convicts, Magus Awuri and Shedrick Obibo, are to die by hanging, the judge, M.O. Opara, said while delivering judgement, Punch newspaper reported.
The newspaper did not state when the judgement was delivered.
The convicts were among the five members of the SARS team including an Assistant Superintendent, Samuel Chigbu, Olisa Emeka and Ogoligo that were facing trial for killing Michael Akor and Michael Igwe, while in their custody.
The slain men were accused of stealing recharge cards in Oyigbo, Oyigbo Local Government Area of Rivers State in 2015.
Two of the police officers, Messrs Chigbu and Ogoli, however, died in the custody of the Nigerian Correctional Centre in Port Harcourt while the three others were still on trial.
Delivering judgement on the matter, Mr Opara found Messrs Ibibo and Awuri guilty of conspiracy to murder while Mr Emeka was acquitted.
Addressing reporters after the judgement, the prosecution counsel said Mr Emeka was acquitted because they (the prosecution) failed to prove the case against him, but added that justice had been served for the family of the deceased.
“It will serve as a deterrent hopefully to other police officers and give some sort of closure to the families of the deceased person,” the prosecution counsel said.
Katherine Akoro, a mother to one of the slain men, was full of happiness over the judgement.
She said the police officers would also experience a taste of their own medicine.
“They killed my son, carried our property in 2011. My son said I should forgive them, let them go and bring those things they took.
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“I said if you are carrying all that property, bring my son, I will be okay. I thank God he has fought for me. I am happy,” Mrs Akoro said.
SARS, a controversial police unit, was accused of having links to extrajudicial killings, forced disappearances, extortion, torture and framing up of suspects.
After several investigations on its activities, the unit was disbanded in October 2020 after Nigerians took to the streets during the EndSARS protests.
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