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Friday, August 12, 2022

Doctor, 50, Charged with Ekweremadu on Organ Harvesting Plot

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A United Kingdom-based doctor has been accused of conniving with the Nigerian ex-lawmaker facing trial on trafficking and organ harvesting in the UK, Ike Ekweremadu, and his wife to traffic a homeless man into the UK to harvest his kidney for their daughter.

The doctor, Obinna Obeta, 50, from Southwark, south London, is charged under the Modern Slavery Act, Daily Mail reports.

Obeta, who appeared at Bexley Magistrates’ Court on 13 July, is charged with arranging the travel of 21-year-old Davi Ukpo from Nigeria to the UK.

He is also accused of conspiring with 60-year-old Ike Ekweremadu – a barrister and former deputy president of the Nigerian Senate – to arrange or facilitate the travel of the man with a view to him being exploited through organ harvesting.

It is alleged Ike Ekweremadu, 60, and his wife, Beatrice Ekweremadu, 55, brought the 21-year-old man from Nigeria to the UK.

Prosecutors claim they planned to have his kidney removed so it could be given to their daughter.

The man is said to have refused to consent to the procedure after undergoing tests at the Royal Free Hospital in Hampstead, north-west London, according to Daily Mail.

The couple were arrested at Heathrow Airport on June 21 after arriving on a flight from Turkey. They appeared at the Old Bailey Friday for a bail hearing.

The couple deny wrongdoing or that there was a criminal conspiracy, and claim no exploitation occurred.

Prosecutor Tim Probert-Wood had said, “The case began on 5 May 2022 when the complainant presented himself at Staines Police Station and claimed he had been transported to this country for the purpose of his kidney being removed.

“He arrived on 20th February 2022 and was taken to Royal Free Hospital where tests were conducted.

“For the purpose he was there he did not consent to the taking of his kidney.

“He returned to the house he was staying and his treatment changed dramatically.

“He described being treated effectively as a slave.”

The victim allegedly escaped the address and was homeless for three days before he turned up at Staines Police Station.

Ike and Beatrice were arrested in the UK on 21 June after flying in to Heathrow from Turkey.

Martin Hicks, QC, defending Ike, has said: ‘We deny that there was any exploitation or any intent to do so.

‘The argument will be factual denial.’

Daily Mail reports that all three defendants, who are in custody, are due to appear at the Old Bailey on August 4.

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