The 'excesses' of the officials of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad is in the news again.

A victim, Lucky Joseph, has narrated how he was allegedly harassed by the operatives of the squad.

Joseph explained that the men, who didn’t find anything incriminating on him, stripped him naked and pulled him by the private parts in public.

He said, “I was passing when two SARS men grabbed me from the back. They told me to raise my hands so that they could search me.

“I told them that before they searched me, they should allow me to search myself so that nothing incriminating would be planted on me. They disagreed and began to search me. They brought out only my handkerchief. As one of them wanted to put it back into my pocket, I told him to hold on because I did not want him to add anything to it.

“As I did that, a wrap of hemp fell. When that happened, one of them quickly picked it. They ordered me to enter the car they brought, but I refused.

“A crowd gathered and asked where they were taking me to. Four of them began to drag me and I asked them what my offence was. As they were dragging me, I struggled with them. They stripped me naked and began to pull my manhood, but I did not relent. I refused to follow them because I believe I did nothing wrong.

“Two of them later brought out machetes and rifles. I told them that if they wanted to shoot me, they should go ahead because I was sure I did not commit any offence.

“As we were struggling, some wraps of Indian hemp fallen off their pockets. They used the machetes to cut my body and tried to handcuff me; but I told them they could not handcuff me.”

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It was learnt that when they eventually threw the victim inside the boot of their car, residents begged for his freedom and were asked to raise N30,000.

Joseph said it was after the N30,000 was given to the operatives that he was released, adding that his body was filled with injuries.

A video had gone viral on social media last Thursday showing how the 38-year-old was battered by the security operatives.

Some residents of Odums Street, Choba Extension, in the Obio Akpor Local Government Area of Port-Harcourt, where the incident happened, explained that to avert any extra-judicial killing, they gave the operatives N30,000.

The state Police Public Relations Officer, Nnamdi Omoni, said though he was not aware of the incident, Joseph’s claim that the SARS operatives had hemp was an afterthought. 

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