Nigerian Politician And Wife Found Guilty of Organ Trafficking in UK


After a six-week trial at the Old Bailey, Ekweremadu, 60, his wife Beatrice, 56, and Dr Obinna Obeta, 51, were found guilty of facilitating the travel of a young man to Britain with the intent of exploiting him.

The court, however, cleared the lawmaker’s daughter, Sonia.

The jury concluded that Ekweremadu, his wife, and their doctor plotted to bring the 21-year-old Lagos street trader to London in order to exploit him for his kidney.

Hugh Davies KC, the prosecutor, told the court that Ekweremadus and Obeta viewed the man and other potential donors as “disposable assets – spare components for reward.” He described their interaction with the individual as a “emotionally cold commercial transaction.”

The behaviour of Ekweremadu showed “entitlement, dishonesty and hypocrisy”, Davies told the jury.

He said Ekweremadu, who owns several properties and had a staff of 80, “agreed to reward someone for a kidney for his daughter – somebody in circumstances of poverty and from whom he distanced himself and made no inquiries, and with whom, for his own political protection, he wanted no direct contact”.

Davies added, “What he agreed to do was not simply expedient in the clinical interests of his daughter, Sonia, it was exploitation, it was criminal. It is no defence to say he acted out of love for his daughter. Her clinical needs cannot come at the expense of the exploitation of somebody in poverty.”

Ekweremadu, who denied the charge, told the court he was the victim of a scam. Obeta, who also denied the charge, claimed the man was not offered a reward for his kidney and was acting altruistically. Beatrice denied any knowledge of the alleged conspiracy. Sonia did not give evidence.

The judge, Mr Justice Jeremy Johnson, will pass sentence at a later date.


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