Judges Order Police to Bring Investigation Evidence on Ex-Security Deputy Head

Judges at the Federal High Court have ordered Police to present preliminary evidence showing probable cause from their investigations on Yared Zerihun, former deputy director of the National Intelligence & Security Service (NISS) who is suspected of alleged human rights abuse.

A panel of three judges of the 10th Criminal Bench of Lideta Division has ordered Police to file their investigative evidence after they appear before the Court without them.

Yared was arrested on November 14, 2018, suspected of human rights abuses. Police claimed that Yared was allegedly involved in a violation of human rights of detainees suspected of being members of former dissident groups.

Police also said Yared has allegedly did that receiving orders from his former boss, Getachew Assefa, who was director general of NISS. Police reported that Yared was arrested at one of the hotels in Dukem town, while he was allegedly trying to flee.

During today’s session, where he appeared at the Court for the fourth time, Yared told judges that he was in a state of mental depression when he heard that the Police was after him.

He also claimed that he went to spouse’s family due to the depression but not intended to run away as Police claimed.

“I was contemplating to commit suicide,” Yared told judges, appearing before the court with two lawyers.

He also said that he was Deputy Director of NISS for a year and eight months contrary to the Police allegations of his involvement in human rights abuses for the past 27 years.

“Even though I joined the institution in 1995, I was working as a low ranking officer,” he told the court. “Someone with a lower position could not have committed all of the allegations.”

He claimed he has had a close relationship with Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD) and told the judges that the Prime Minister was waiting until his health situation normalises to appoint him to a public office. After hearing his plea, the judges asked the investigators to present their preliminary evidence.

But, the two Police officers who have attended the session, told the Judges that they do not have it with them prompting the judges to order the investigators to file it with the court tomorrow.

Published on Nov 22,2018 [ Vol 19 ,No 969]



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