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Kashamu To Appear in Court on Monday – NDLEA
The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, said senator-elect, Buruji Kashamu, would appear in court on Monday, following his house arrest on Saturday, in relation to his extradition process to the U.S.
Kashamu is wanted in the U.S. on charges of drug trafficking since 1998.
According to a statement released on Saturday evening by Ofoyeju Mitchell, spokesperson for NDLEA, the senator – elect’s house arrest followed “a formal request for extradition received from the Embassy of the United States of America.”
“Kashamu has been a target of both the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) for over 20 years and was indicted in the Northern District of Illinois, United States on charges brought against him by ICE,” the statement read.
The NDLEA, which debunked allegation that it planned to forcefully fly Kashamu out of the country, said he has been allowed access to his lawyers and family and assured him that he would be fully protected by the law.
“The NDLEA has assured Kashamu that he will be afforded all the protections of the law and will be given his day in court. Assertions that he will be bundled up under cover of darkness and whisked out of the country are untrue and should not be given any credence. We expect Kashamu as a senator-elect to demonstrate confidence in the Nigerian judicial system and not insinuate otherwise.”
The 56 years old politician was indicted in the U.S. in 1998 for conspiring to import and distribute heroin, something he has blamed on mistaken identity but has refused to go to the U.S. to clear his name.
The U.S. had failed to extradite him from Britain in 2003 after serving five years in prison there but had to be released because of uncertainty about his identity. He was found with $230, 000 when he was arrested.
Kashamu, a strong member of the Peoples Democratic Party and major financier of the party, has blamed his travails on political opponents, including former President Olusegun Obasanjo, and has already filed a case in court seeking to stop his extradition.