Abba Kyari, the Deputy Commissioner of Police, might face dismissal or demotion, and criminal prosecution if any illegal link is found between him and Hushpuppi, the Police Service Commission (PSC) revealed.
Newsflash Nigeria had reported that the Instagram personality, who is known for his luxury life, Ramon Abbas, popularly known as Hushpuppi, was arrested in the UAE in June 2020 alongside 11 of his associates over allegations bordering on hacking, impersonation, scamming, banking fraud, and identity theft.
His extradition to the US had followed after the UAE police detailed his arrest in a special operation dubbed ‘Fox Hunt 2’ where he was accused of defrauding 1.9 million victims to the tune of N168 billion.
Hushpuppi was thereafter arraigned and detained at the Metropolitan Correctional Center (MCC) in Chicago ahead of his trial.
Newsflash Nigeria had reported that Hushpuppi had claimed that he bribed Nigeria’s celebrated police chief Abba Kyari, US court documents reveal.
The US court said Hushpuppi used Kyari to arrest and jail a co-conspirator, Chibuzo Vincent after the latter threatened to expose a $1m fraud committed against a Qatari businessman.
The infamous fraudster had also pleaded guilty to conspiracy to engage in money laundering, facing up to 20 years in jail according to the documents.
Hushpuppi will be sentenced in the coming weeks and will forfeit some of his assets and his rights to appeal while also paying restitution to victims of his years-long fraud according to fresh reports about his case.
Officials said in court filings that Hushpuppi disclosed during interrogation that he paid bribes to Abba Kyari, a Deputy Police Commissioner, to have one of his rivals arrested and jailed in Nigeria following a dispute over a $1.1 million dupe of a Qatari businessperson.
Following the allegation, Court documents disclosed that Otis Wright of the United States District Court for the Central District of California ordered the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to arrest Kyari and produce him in the United States for his role in a multi-million dollar fraud.
The Nigerian Police on Thursday evening said it would carry out an internal review of the allegations against Kyari.
But speaking to ThePUNCH on Friday, the Commissioner in charge of Media on the board of the Police Service Commission, Austin Braimoh, said the PSC would not be bound on the internal review of the IGP.
According to Braimoh, the PSC would carry out further investigations on whatever findings the police authorities made on Kyari.
He said, “The commission won’t say anything until we get the official report. We are the final decision-maker on his fate as a police officer. Everything concerning his indictment can be investigated and the criminal aspect of it can be sent to the law court but on the official aspect concerning discipline; no other body has power to do anything to him as a police officer, it is only the commission that has such powers.
“So, the commission is awaiting the full report of investigation and his indictment and we will treat it officially; we would apply the law. The law will determine the various punishments that we can award against him. He can be dismissed depending on the gravity of the offence; we can demote him, reduce his rank; we can suspend him.
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“Many things are laid out before us pertaining to various offences and after that, the criminal aspect would be referred to the court for prosecution. It depends on how the report is coming; whether it is coming to us directly for us to extricate the criminal aspect and treat it or they want to treat it and refer the official one to us to discipline him.’’
The PSC member disclosed that Kyari – Commander of the IG Intelligence Response Team – would be queried after which he would be interrogated by the Force Disciplinary Committee.
He noted, “We don’t always believe the police should investigate the police (personnel) except through the commission. But the important thing is that whatever thing they decide to do, we are not obliged to accept their investigations. So, our investigation department would still go further to get the facts.
“What we know they would do is that a query would be issued based on the complaints against him, he would be asked to defend himself and then, he would face what we call the Force Disciplinary Committee which would interrogate him and the report is passed to the DIG in charge and from there to the IG.
“The IG would basically forward the final findings and recommendations to the commission. The commission would now carry on with their own investigation; we have to re-investigate what they have done to ensure that they comply with the rule of law and what is expected.
“Our lawyer would look into it, he would check the facts and if we feel there is negligence and that some things are not done, we would do a thorough job and eventually, we would have recommendations from the standing committee to the plenary for a final decision and our decision is final on his career.”