Law enforcement officers can break into homes if suspects resist arrest

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) says it is legal for its officers to break into any home if suspects resist arrest.

The commission said this in EFCC Alert, its monthly e-magazine, citing sections of the Administration of Criminal Justice (ACJA) Act of 2015.

According to Article 12(2) of the law, law enforcement officers have the right to forcibly enter any house as long as the suspect is confirmed to be there.

“Where access to a house or place cannot be obtained under subsection (1) of this section, the person or constable may enter the house or place and search it for the suspect at stop, and in order to perform a entry into the house or place, may break down any exterior or interior door or window of any house or place, whether of the suspect to be arrested or any other person, or otherwise entering such house or place, if, after notification of his authority and purpose , and application for admission duly made, he cannot obtain admission,” EFCC said in the magazine.

In August 2021, following the invasion of the residence of Dorathy Bachor, a former roommate of BBNaija, TheCable publishes a report detailing the position of the law regarding issues of forced arrest among many other relevant issues.

The report notes that Section 149(1) of the ACJA provides that a person residing in a building must allow a law enforcement officer free and unimpeded access to conduct a search.

Section 149(2) allows for the reasonable use of force where access cannot be obtained by the officers executing the search warrant.

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