Enyimba player, Stephen Chukwude, has narrated his ordeal in the hands of men of the Nigeria Police Force, who accused him of being involved in internet fraud, popularly known as ‘Yahoo Yahoo’.
In a live video recorded by the player, two police officers stopped him in his Mercedes Benz with Lagos number plate LSR 84 AZ, and tagged him as an internet fraudster for driving such a car.
Despite the player’s display of his identity card and presence of football paraphernalia in the car, the video showed one of the police officers saying “everybody who has a Mercedes Benz is an internet fraudster.”
When contacted on Thursday, the footballer said he was maltreated and asked to pay before being released.
He alleged that the police officers, one of whom he identified as Williams, refused to take him to the police station and threatened him with their guns.
He said, “The police officer thought he could extort money from me, but the situation backfired. After the whole drama, they threatened to take me to the station and later to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission. I agreed, only for us to head to the station and he asked me to park at a joint where they were collecting money from people.
“I saw some exotic cars there. One of the victims agreed to pay N150,000 and was willing to transfer; but I was not ready to pay a dime. I insisted that I wanted them to take me to the police station. I wanted to be sure that they were authentic police officers.
“As I navigated to enter the Area Command, he said I should not enter. He asked me to park somewhere for him to go and collect ‘authority’. They later came back and said ‘Oga’ asked me to settle them.
“They called me a bastard, threatened me for recording them.”
They checked my phone gallery but could not find the video. They didn’t know that it was a live stream.
“When they could not find anything, they asked me to find them sachet water money. One of them, who is an Igbo, later discussed with them and they took N1000 and zoomed off.”
He said that police authorities in Enugu State have got in touch with him and apologised for the incident.
“The Police Public Relations Officer of Enugu State invited and questioned me. He later apologised and we exchanged contacts,” the player added.