Alleged Human Trafficking: Norminal Complainant Gives Evidence

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Mrs Florence Obadiaru, the nominal complainant, in a suit filed by the Nigeria Police Force against an alleged UK-destination human trafficker, Benedicta Omomoh Usen has given part of her evidence before a Federal High Court in Abuja.

The defendant alongside one Mrs. Oyomiye Lamidi who is on the run is being prosecuted for Allegedly conspiring in 2011 to traffic one Miss Cynthia Ese to the UK for sexual exploitation, an offence punishable under Section 27 of the trafficking in persons (Prohibition) Law Enforcement Amendment Act, 2015.

Mrs. Obadiaru who flew in from the UK for the sole purpose of giving evidence in the trial told Justice Inyang Ekwo that she only accommodated the victim and did not play further roles.

During her Examination-in-chief, Florence said the defendant (Omomoh Usen) who was her childhood friend gave her a telephone call from Nigeria and pleaded with her to accommodate her cousin Cynthia Ese (the victim) who has been staying in a hotel in London for some days for a period of seven days with the understanding that she will transfer an undisclosed amount of money to her account to give to the victim to
secure accommodation.

Benedicta Usen finally after 17 days sent the sum of £355 by Western Union from Italy through one Lina Uwa who Benedicta asked for my permission to give my number to. The money was given to Olayinka the person who picked Cynthia up from the airport. Olayinka was also the guy who brought Cynthia to me from the hotel and also picked her from my house the day she left (after collecting the £355 cash) to an unknown destination afterwards.

Mrs. Obadiaru said the defendant had told her the victim was in the UK to further her education, noting that it was unknown to her that Ese who she accommodated for about 17 days before she went her way was trafficked.

The trial Judge, Inyang Ekwo adjourned the case to December 11, 2020, for the continuation of the trial.

Addressing newsmen shortly after the proceedings, Police presecutor, Wisdom Madaki expressed displeasure over the charge of the nominal complainant but said he was optimistic that Justice would be served.

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