The three men charged in the April 5, 2018 bank robbery in Offa, Kwara State on Friday told a High Court in Ilorin that their confessional statements admitting to the crime were obtained under duress while in police custody.
The police charged Ayoade Akinnibosun, Ibikunle Ogunleye and Adeola Abraham with criminal conspiracy to rob the banks, robbery of the banks, conspiracy to murder, murder of nine policemen and other innocent citizens, and illegal possession of firearms.
Testifying while being led in evidence in the trial-within-trial by their counsel, Mathias Emeribe, Akinnibosun said he was tortured and threatened by the police to make the confessional statements.
Akinnibosun alleged that Deputy Commissioner of Police, Abba Kyari, also asked him and the other accused persons to implicate the President of the Senate, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki.
He said: “Abba Kyari told me to say that the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, gave me the guns for the operations.
“But I declined to do, contending that my life is at stake.
“He promised that they would reward me handsomely and set me free if I can indict Senator Saraki.
“When I disagreed, they called some policemen to take me back to the cell.
“During this time, my hands were tied to my legs.”
Akinnibosun added that he was the leader of Kwara South Liberation Movement mobilising young jobless graduates for the senator representing Kwara South Senatorial District.
“The essence is to secure government jobs for the boys,” he said.
Akinnibosun, Ogunleye and Ibrahim gave graphic details of their experience allegedly in police custody in Abuja.
During one of their encounters at the police Intelligence Response Team “theatre room”, they alleged that one Inspector Vincent allegedly shot dead five men.
Akinnibosun, Ogunleye and Ibrahim, alleged that it was in the same “theatre room” that Inspector Vincent, otherwise known as Mr. Torture, allegedly shot dead Michael Adikwu for failing to indict them in the robbery incident.
Specifically, Ogunleye said: “They brought the late Adikwu to implicate us, but when he said he had not met any of us in his life, Mr. Torture shot him to death.”
After listening to the accused persons’ testimony, the presiding judge, Justice Halimat Salman, adjourned the case until March 25 for continuation of trial within trial.
NAN reports that Prosecution Eitness, Inspector Hitila Hassan, on Thursday told the court that the suspects voluntarily gave their statements under his supervision.
Lead Prosecuting Counsel, Prof. Wahab Egbewole, sought to tender the statements as exhibit, but the defence counsel objected.