Justice Januaria Costa also ordered Cape Verde to immediately release Saab, who has been in detention since June 2020 for alleged money laundering
Saab was arrested on June 12, 2020, on his way to Venezuela from Iran. He had stopped over at Amilcar Cabral International Airport on the Island of Sal when he was detained by Cape Verde authorities.
His arrest was said to have been prompted by the United States which is engaged in a feud with Venezuela.
Human rights lawyer, Mr. Femi Falana (SAN), subsequently filed a suit before the ECOWAS court, insisting that Saab had diplomatic immunity at the time of his arrest.
The ECOWAS Court on December 20, 2020 ruling ordered the Republic of Cape Verde to place Saab under permanent home detention in good conditions, including access to medical treatment and visits.
The court also ordered that the applicant should not be extradited pending the decision of the court on the substantive suit.
But Cape Verde challenged the jurisdiction of the court on the matter, adding that Saab’s immunity had lapsed when he was arrested.