Nigerian couple accused of ‘bringing man to UK as slave to harvest his kidney for their daughter’

A Nigerian politician and his wife, who are accused of plotting to harvest a man’s kidney, face trial at the Old Bailey

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Ike Ekweremadu, 60, a district senator and lawyer, and his wife Beatrice Nwanneka Ekweremadu, 55, are alleged to have transported 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.

The Ekweremadus allegedly treated him as a slave before he escaped and went to Staines police station in Surrey.

The couple were arrested at Heathrow Airport on June 21 after arriving on a flight from Turkey and appeared in the dock at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on Thursday.

Ike Ekweremadu is charged with conspiracy to arrange or facilitate travel of another person with a view to exploitation, while his wife is charged with arranging or facilitating travel of another person with a view to exploitation.

The couple were not asked to enter pleas, but the court heard they have indicated not guilty pleas.

They deny the alleged facts and that there was a criminal conspiracy, and will say no exploitation occurred, it was said.

Deputy chief magistrate Tan Ikram remanded them in custody ahead of their next appearance at the Old Bailey, for a plea and trial preparation hearing, on August 4.