Lawyer files N160m suit against Customs –

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From Godwin Tsa, Abuja

A legal practitioner, Chikaosolu Ojukwu, has filed a N160 million suit against the Nigerian Customs Service Board and the Nigerian Customs Service as damages over his alleged unlawful detention and extortion by men of the Service.

In the suit before the Abuja division of the Federal High Court, Ojukwu, through his Counsel, Segun Fiki, is seeking the determination of the court as to whether he is liable to pay import duty, value added tax and other levies to the defendants in respect of his personal effects, in view of the provisions of Section 8 of the Customs, Excise Tariff, etc (Consolidation) Act and paragraph 7 of the Second Schedule to the Customs, Excise Tariff, etc (Consolidation) Act.

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The court is also urged to decide whether or not in view of Section 8 of the Customs, Excise Tariff, etc (Consolidation) Act and Paragraph 7 of the Second Schedule to the Custom, Excise Tariff, etc (Consolidation) Act, the defendants are entitled to impose and collect duty on the baggage and personal effects of the plaintiff and, indeed, any other Nigerian who has not been outside the jurisdiction of the Federal Republic of Nigeria for not less than nine months.

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Whether or not the detention of the plaintiff by restraining him from leaving the airport premises to take his medications until he pays the import duty, value added tax and other levies of four pieces of IPhone 13 Pro is unlawful. Whether or not the detention of the four pieces iPhone 13 Pro by the defendants after the payment of the import duty, value added tax and other levies is unlawful and violates the plaintiff’s right to property, as guaranteed under the African Charter of Human and Peoples Rights. (Continued on www.sunnewsonline.com)

Meanwhile, the defendants had, in the defence, asked the court to dismiss the suit in its entirety.

The court presided over by Justice Ahmad Mohammed, after allowing counsel in the suit, Segun Wiki, for the plaintiff, Ikechukwu Emeto for the first and second defendants, and Emmanuel Obeta for the third defendant, adopted the written addresses, fixed July 5 for judgment in the suit.

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