“Because of my beard, nice look and UK drivers license and PhD qualification, Sars officers seized my phones, detained and cuffed me"

A victim shared his story on how he was allegedly detained wrongly and robbed off his belongings because he looks young, bearded and was driving a flashy car. 

What was his crime? his UK phone was riddled with regular, innocent text messages. The guy has been a flipping resident of the UK for the last 12 years, visiting Nigeria for the first time in 4 years, shown evidences of his residency, UK drivers license, PhD qualifications, Bournemouth University staff lecturer ID and complimentary cards, UK bank/credit cards and even old ATM and POS receipts in his wallet and his crime was, "A Yahoo Boy". 

Read His Story:
The combination F-SARS and Mobile Policemen around Mandela Car wash in GRA Port Harcourt must have extorted nothing less than N1m yesterday from Road users. I was a victim. I demanded to be arrested and taken to the station for our so-called offenses to be properly documented and treated...of course they vociferously, almost violently and shamelessly refused…they instead demanded ridiculous sums of money from me for my brother to be released. 

First of, when my younger brother called to say he had been stopped by some heavily armed men, in less than 5 seconds into that conversation, I heard shouts and obvious distress in the background..it sounded like slaps, next thing, the line cut. The only thing I got from that 5 secs convo was that armed men stopped me somewhere in GRA...Alarmed and not even sure if it was the police or where to look, I drove thru every street in GRA phase 2 & 3 for the next hour. Within that hour, I must have given his both lines over 300 missed calls. Because his lines were still on and no one was picking I concluded dude has been kidnapped seeing that there's no way if it was the police, they won't let him pick his calls to at least let his people know which station to come. 

 At this point, it occurred to me to check every police division around that vicinity. Went to Nkpolu Divisional Police Station, Olu Obasanjo and Abacha Road Police Stations respectively…didn't find him and neither was there any incident reports....they were all so kind to call all their patrol teams and each one of them claimed not to have been in such an encounter that morning nor received any incident reports.

Horrified and confused at the same time, I decided, drive around some more, then head to the family house to see if he must have dealt with whatever situation and gone home...didn't make any sense tho, seeing that he still wasn't taking my calls. On my way home, coming off Prof. Abowei Street onto Tombia extension, right there! I saw his car. He wasn't in sight at all. My heart calmed when I saw my cousin pleading seriously with the officers on ground. I figured this cousin of mine must have seen him and stopped to inquire what the situation was.
Not sure I parked very well, I stormed out of my car in a fit of rage screaming at the officers first for seizing his phones and secondly for treating the young man like a criminal. I mean, this was some 2 hours and over 700 calls after that first call he gave me...his both phones were seized, dude was cuffed and put in the back seat of their patrol vehicle, for what? I literally went nuts.

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"I am all up for the security agencies mounting roadblocks and carrying out security checks on any vehicle but trumping up charges and fleecing people off their hard-earned money for no reason is a no no. If you have any reasons to arrest an individual, do so. If you don’t, let them go. Last I checked, even the Nigerian Police Force reckons bail is free".