A high court sitting in Kaduna state has acquitted and discharged Sheikh Ibrahim El-Zakzaky alongside his wife Zeenat Ibrahim after six years in detention.
El-Zakzaky is the leader of the Islamic movement in Nigeria, IMN and has been standing trial since December 2015 in case of culpable homicide, and criminal activities.
The defendants were brought to court on Wednesday morning by officials of the Nigerian Correctional service amidst tight security.
After a ruling that consumes over eight hours, Justice Gideon Kurada, The presiding Judge upheld the no-case submission filed by Sheikh Ibraheem El-Zakzaky and his wife in an alleged culpable homicide, unlawful assembly and disruption of public peace levelled against them by the Kaduna state government.
The defendants had pleaded not guilty to the charges preferred against them.
The Judge in his judgement held that the charges filed in 2018, under the Kaduna State Penal Code, 2017 over offences allegedly committed on or about December 12, 2015, are incompetent and amount to an abuse of court process.
The judge in his ruling held that the prosecution failed to establish a prima facie case against the defendants.
Their lead counsel and a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Mr Femi Falana, had on July 1, argued that all the 15 witnesses presented by the prosecution counsel were unable to establish any connection between the alleged crimes and Sheikh El-Zakzaky and his wife.
Falana then prayed the court to rule in favour of his clients and dismiss the charges levelled against them as there was no criminal case that has been established against them so far by the Kaduna State Government.