Senator Ekweremadu’s sentencing scheduled for May 5
Ike Ekweremedu, the former deputy-president of the senate, was found guilty on March 23 of luring a young man to the United Kingdom for the purpose of harvesting his kidney during a six-week trial at the Old Bailey. The prominent senator was found guilty alongside his wife, Beatrice, and a physician, Obinna Obeta. Under the Modern Slavery Act, the first of its kind.
On May 5, Justice Jeremy Johnson of the Old Bailey will render a verdict. Contrary to rumours circulating on social media, the senator from Enugu has not been sentenced to death. The claim that Ekweremadu has been sentenced to ten years in prison by a court in the United Kingdom cannot be confirmed because bloggers and WhatsApp broadcasters have not cited any credible sources.
Under the Modern Slavery Act, Ekwerwmadu’s crime carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison. However, there is currently no credible evidence that the sentence has been handed over to the embattled senator.
In a letter to the court clerk in April, former President Olusegun Obasanjo pleaded with the British court to tamper with justice in the case against Ekweremadu and his wife.
While he acknowledged that the crime for which Ekweremadu was convicted was reprehensible, the former president urged the British government to show leniency to the prominent Nigerian family because their sick daughter was the intended recipient of the kidney.