Federal High Court, Abuja has again dismissed an application for the extradition of Ogun-East Senator Buruji Kashamu, to the United States of America to face trial for illicit drugs-related offences.
Former Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Mr. Mohammed Bello Adoke, SAN, had filed the application on May 28, 2015 upon the US government’s request that the Federal Government submits Kashamu for extradition.
In his ruling yesterday, Justice Gabriel Kolawole held that he lacked jurisdiction to entertain the suit while the judgment of the division of the court in Lagos nullifying the proceedings on June 8, 2015 and the same judgment affirmed by another judge of the same Lagos division had not been vacated by an appellate court.
In June, Justice Okon Abang of the Lagos Division of the Federal High Court had nullified the extradition proceedings which he said were initiated in contravention of an earlier order of the court.
Abang’s nullification of the proceedings was affirmed by Justice Ibrahim Buba in another ruling on June 23, 2015.
Though Justice Kolawole expressed reservations on the Lagos judgments, which he described as “wild and audacious,” he held that it was the exclusive duty of the Court of Appeal to determine whether they were rightly or wrongly given.
Kashamu’s counsel, Mr. Ajibola Oluyede, had on June 25, 2015, when the case came up for the first time, urged the court to dismiss the extradition application in the light of the judgments delivered in Lagos federal high court.
Mr. Mohammed Hassan, counsel to the Federal Government, had filed an application, prayed the court to issue a bench warrant of arrest against Kashamu for him to appear in court to face the extradition case against him.
Kashamu’s counsel, Dr. Alex Izinyon, SAN, in his submission, urged the court to strike out the matter, arguing that the orders made by Justices Ibrahim Buba and Abang of the Federal High Court, Lagos had extinguished the current action by the prosecution.
He urged the court to give effect to the orders made by the two courts and strike out the matter as filed by the prosecution.
Hassan, however, urged the court to discountenance the submissions of the defence counsel, saying that Federal High Court in Lagos has no supervisory jurisdiction over Federal High Court in Abuja.
According to him, at the time the orders were made in Lagos, extradition process had not been initiated.
Hassan, therefore, prayed the court to nullify the orders of the Federal High Courts in Lagos, pointing out that a court of coordinate jurisdiction can nullify an order made in error by another court.
The US accuses Kashamu of conspiring with others to intentionally import “and did import” into the United States” quantities of mixtures containing heroin, between 1992 and 1995.
The offence is said to contravene Section 952(a) of Title 21, United States Code, and punishable under Section 960 of the same law.
The offence attracts an imprisonment of not more than 10 years or a fine of $10million in the case of an individual or both.

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