Embattled Nigerian Senator, Buruji Kashamu, has filed a fresh suit at the United States District Court seeking an injunction ordering the U.S. to cease all efforts to abduct him from Nigeria or any other country.
In the suit dated April 9, 2015, Mr. Kashamu said if his relief is not granted, he is likely to be abducted and possibly killed or injured.
“The threatened abduction violates the treaty between the United States and Nigeria and due process under the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution,” Mr. Kashamu said through his lawyers, Robert Cohen and Scott Frankel.
Mr. Kashamu, a Senator representing Ogun East, is wanted in the U.S. for his alleged involvement in an international cartel smuggling heroin into the country.
In 1998, Mr. Kashamu and 14 others were charged by a federal grand jury. 11 of the suspects pleaded guilty and were sentenced to various jail terms – most of them have finished their prison sentence.
KASHAMU VERSUS AMERICA
In his latest suit in the court for the Northern District of Illinois, Mr. Kashamu stated that he obtained a recent information about his imminent abduction by Nigerian officials working under the direction of U.S. law enforcement agents.
Joined in the suit are Eric Holder, Attorney General of the United States; The U.S. Department of Justice; James Comey, Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the FBI; Jeh Johnson, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security; and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
“This is an action for preliminary and permanent injunctive relief based on the information received by Plaintiff Kashamu leading him to believe that he will be subject to an imminent illegal abduction in Nigeria by United States law enforcement officials acting with Nigerian officials designed to transport him to the United States to stand trial on pending alleged drug offenses without going through the extradition procedures,” Mr. Kashamu’s lawyer said.
“Kashamu’s belief that he will be subject to imminent illegal abduction is based on specific information that he has received indicating that his political opponents are conspiring with the United States government to illegally abduct him and transfer him to the United States to ensure that he does not take his democratically elected position as Senator.”
Mr. Kashamu further argued that his abduction would be in violation of his right to be free from unlawful seizure and arrest and from the deprivation of life and liberty without due process of law, as set out in the extradition treaty between Nigeria and U.S.
In May, the senator had filed a similar suit at the Federal High Court in Lagos alleging that Nigerian security agencies were plotting to abduct him and forcibly transport him to the U.S.
Two previous efforts by Mr. Kashamu to get American courts to quash his indictment had been unsuccessful.
In 2009, Mr. Kashamu had, through an attorney in the U.S., filed a motion to quash his arrest warrant and to dismiss the indictment against him on the ground that an English court had found that he was not the one charged with smuggling drugs into the U.S.
Two years later, he filed a follow-up motion arguing that his Sixth Amendment right to a speedy trial had been violated and that the U.S. government had violated his Fifth Amendment right to due process because it lacked personal jurisdiction over him.
The U.S. District Court dismissed Mr. Kashamu’s suit, accusing him of doing everything within his power, including document forgery as well as political pressure, to frustrate his trial in the U.S.
Mr. Kashamu’s appeal was also dismissed the U.S. Court of Appeal, with the judges noting that the law maker did not want to be extradited to the U.S. to stand trial on the “very serious criminal charges” against him.