Regions Accused of Failure to Arrest 1,596 Suspected Criminals

ADDIS ABEBA – Federal attorney general office accused on Tuesday seven regional states of failure to arrest and handover 1, 596 individuals allegedly involved in several criminal activities.

The regions are Benishangul-Gumuz (827), SNNP (655), Oromia (50), Amhara (18), Somali (33), Tigray (4) and the capital Addis Ababa (9).

The suspects are not facing justice due to regional officials’ failure to arrest them, according to the federal Attorney’s six-month report.

Attorney General Birhanu Tsegaye, while presenting the six-month performance report to the parliament, said the issue has made the job of prosecutors more challenging.

Birhanu has asked for lawmakers’ intervention.

Members of parliament have to push their region to act on the outlaws, he said indicating that, in some cases, the suspects have held some kind of government positions.

Owing to the absence of suspected individuals, he said at least 3716 dossiers have been halted.

Apart from regions, the attorney general has also mentioned that his office is in constant contact with foreign countries that host 28 individuals suspected of crime and corruption cases.

“We want these countries to extradite them to Ethiopia so that they can face justice,” he said. “Some have already given us positive response to our request”.

The attorney general described the corruption cases as “very complex and complicated” to expedite their extradition.

He said some of these suspects don’t have a single property registered under their name.

Their properties, in some cases, are registered in the name of foreign nationals, he said emphasizing the importance of a wide range of support from every stakeholder in the investigation.

By Sisay Sahlu