Beatrice Nwanneka, the wife of Nigeria’s former deputy senate president, Ike Ekweremadu, has been reportedly granted bail amid a trial over alleged organ harvesting.
Ekweremadu’s Wife Bailed
On June 23, Ekweremadu and Beatrice were arrested by the UK police in London for allegedly trafficking a homeless boy from Lagos into the UK to harvest his organs for their ailing daughter.
The couple, who were arrested for an alleged plot to harvest the kidney of 21-year-old David Ukpo Nwamini, were both charged with conspiracy to arrange or facilitate the travel of another person with a view to exploitation, namely organ harvesting.
Ekweremadu and Beatrice were accused of trafficking David from Lagos into the UK with the passport of a 41-year-old man, to transplant his organs to their daughter who suffers from kidney failure.
While being arraigned on Friday, the lawmaker was remanded in custody, but his wife was granted bail when she appeared before the central criminal court in London, better known as the Old Bailey.
“The position is that I have granted bail to Beatrice subject to some fairly stringent conditions but I have refused bail to Ike,” Richard Marks, the judge, was quoted as saying.
Foundry Chambers, a law firm identified as representatives for the lawmaker and his wife, in a report published on Monday, also spoke on Beatrice’s release.
“Anu Mohindru Q.C., together with Szilvia Booker, at a hearing on 22/07/22 before the Common Sergeant at the Central Criminal Court secured bail for Beatrice Ekweremadu, the wife of the former Nigerian Deputy Senate leader, Ike Ekweremadu, who is charged together with her husband and Obina Obeta, said to be a middleman in relation to these arrangements with offences of arranging or facilitating the travel of David Nwamini Ukpo with a view to him being exploited, contrary to s.2(1) and 5(1) Modern Slavery Act 2015 and conspiracy to commit such an offence,” the statement reads.
“The essence of the allegation against the defendants is that (using intermediaries) they recruited David Ukpo, a homeless Nigerian male living in Lagos and, on 22nd February 2022, brought him to the UK for the purposes of harvesting a kidney from him to be used for the benefit of their daughter.
“An application for bail on Friday was refused for Ike Ekweremadu but granted for Beatrice on strict conditions to ensure her attendance and obviate any concerns of her being a flight risk ahead of a plea and trial preparation hearing scheduled to take place on 4th August 2022 and a subsequent trial next year.”
The development comes two weeks after the Westminster magistrate court in the UK denied the couple bail and adjourned the case to August 4th, 2022.