Connect with us

Metro

Court Sentences Mike Ozekhome’s Kidnappers To 20-yr Imprisonment Each

Published

on

A Federal High Court, Abuja, on Friday, convicted and sentenced two of the four defendants alleged to have kidnapped Chief Mike Ozekhome, SAN, to a 20-year-jail term each.

Justice Binta Nyako, in a judgment, held that the prosecution had been able to establish the counts preferred against Kelvin Ezeigbe and Frank Azuekor, who were 1st and 2nd defendants, beyond reasonable doubt.

Justice Nyako held that the sentence would run from the day of their arrest.

Advertisement

The judge, however, discharged and acquitted Michael Omonigho and Momoh Haruna, who were 3rd and 4th defendants, of the counts levelled against them in the terrorism charge.

READ ALSO: Groups Fault INEC On Planned Manual Transmission Of Bayelsa Guber Results

According to NAN, she held that though some of the counts against Ezeigbe and Azuekor attracted punishment ranging from death sentence, life imprisonment to at least 10 years jail term, she said she had found that the accused had been remorseful of their criminal act.

The judge also found that they had been in custody for about 10 years from the day of their arrest.

Advertisement

According to the report, while Omonigho, who was said to be the chief priest, was in court, Haruna was not.

When Nyako warned Omonigho to be careful as people worship in his shrine in the open court, the chief priest responded thus: “I have repented my lord.”

The judge, however, directed that Haruna, who was at large, should be brought to court to face the sin of his escape from lawful custody, even though he was discharged of the counts against him.

READ ALSO: Osun Communities Trade Blame Over Communal Clashes

Advertisement

The judge commended the defence lawyer, Bala Dakum, and the prosecution counsel, Chioma Onuegbu, for their industrious input in the course of the trial.

NAN reports that the defendants; Kelvin Ezeigbe, Frank Azuekor, Michael Omonigho and Momoh Haruna were first arraigned before Justice Adeniyi Ademola of a FHC, on June 9, 2014, on a 13-count charge bordering on conspiracy, armed robbery, kidnapping and acts of terrorism.

While the three defendants were in court, Haruna was said to be missing after the attack on Kuje Correctional Centre by terrorists on July 5, 2022.

They were accused of committing acts of terrorism, contrary to Sections 1, 8 and 10 of the Terrorism Prevention Act, 2011.

Advertisement

They were alleged to have, on Aug. 23, 2013, kidnapped Mr. Ozekhome at Iruekpen on his way to Iviukwe in Agenebode, Edo.

Ozekhome was held in captivity for about three weeks before his release allegedly following the payment of N28 million ransom.

They were also accused of kidnapping Delta State Commissioner for Higher Education, Prof Hope Eghagha; Attanasius Ugbme and his friend, Emmanuel Maka Omorogbe, and killing five policemen and two prison officials.

READ ALSO: Nigeria Deepens Bilateral Relations With EU On Security Cooperation

Advertisement

The defendants were also alleged to have compelled Eghagha to pay N7 million, Ugbome paid N20 million and Omorogbe paid N3.5 million.

The five police officers allegedly killed were Paul Ajaka, Sunday Ewanshiha, Michael Akpada, Bakary Ekong and Innocent Odoh.

They also allegedly killed Lawrence Edora and Oyibo Okoye who were prison officers and made away with their service rifles.

The four suspects were refused bail filed on their behalf by their lawyer, Bala Dakum.

Advertisement

While Ezeigbe and Azuekor had been held at the facility of the Department of State Service (DSS), Omonigho and Haruna were held at Kuje Correctional Centre, Abuja.

Metro

NSCDC Busts Major Bunkering Operation In Rivers, Arrests Three

Published

on

The Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps said its operatives busted and dismantled a massive illegal refinery site and arrested three suspects in the Odagwa community, Etche Local Government Area of Rivers State.

The security outfit said the operation which lasted for several hours, led to a site in the forest where the illegal siphoning of crude oil was taking place after the criminals destroyed the manifold of a multinational oil company.

The NSCDC Commandant, Rivers State Command, Basil Igwebueze disclosed this while speaking to newsmen at the scene in Port Harcourt, the state capital, on Monday.

Advertisement

Igwebueze, who was represented by the corps’ spokesperson in the state, SP Olufemi Ayodele, said the operation was conducted by the Special Intelligence Squad codenamed ‘SIS’ of the NSCDC Commandant-General, Dr. Ahmed Abubakar.

READ ALSO: Why I Relocated To US With My Family — Pastor Sam Adeyemi

He said the CG emphasised the need to step up the operational and intelligence mechanism in the protection of critical national assets and infrastructure across the country.

He equally noted that Abubakar has an unwavering determination in waging continuous war against illegal dealings in petroleum products, oil theft, vandalism of oil pipelines, and all forms of economic sabotage, saying, “Within a very short period, the CG’s SIS has dismantled over 350 illegal bunkering sites in the Niger Delta area while hundreds of suspects have been arrested and prosecuted in the court of competent jurisdiction.”

Advertisement

He stated that “today, the Commandant-General’s Special Intelligence Squad swung into action and arrested three suspects while others took to their heels, manoeuvring the forest due to the terrain.”

READ ALSO: Top 10 Most Expensive Football Trophies In The World

He narrated how a large multinational’s manifold was invaded through a broken fence, and large industrial hoses were used to siphon crude oil and transmitted through numerous metal galvanised pipes to cooking pots and further stored in reservoirs for onward loading to would-be buyers. The massive illegal bunkering site was dismantled.

“Having walked through this thick forest, you have practically seen how the manifold and oil wellhead was vandalised by unscrupulous elements.

Advertisement

“They tapped into the source and buried the hoses and pipes underground, waiting for the multinationals to pump the crude. Immediately the pumping starts, they commence their nefarious operations through illegal local refining of crude to derive Automotive Gas Oil, DPK, and other products,” the state commandant said.

READ ALSO: Passengers Stranded As Abuja-bound Train Derails In Kaduna[PHOTOS]

While answering questions on the reason for the continuous rebuilding of some illegal bunkering sites after being dismantled by security agencies, he said that the fight against illegal bunkering is a strategic war that must be fought with a collective will and consciousness, especially with the fact that such acts cause environmental degradation, pollination, and health hazard.

“To eradicate black soot, the locals and all stakeholders must come to terms to say no to the operation of illegal local refineries and other activities which cause more harm to the people and the environment as well.

Advertisement

“On this note, I wish to reiterate the words of the NSCDC boss that the fight against oil theft, vandalism, and illegal dealings in petroleum products is non-negotiable as the NSCDC is fully committed to its statutory mandate of safeguarding all critical national assets and infrastructure.

“We will do this relentlessly and without compromise,” Igwebueze added.

Advertisement
Continue Reading

Metro

Court Sentences 29-year-old To Death By Hanging

Published

on

An Ekiti State High Court, Ado Ekiti Division has sentenced 29-year-old Adedayo Olawole to death by hanging for the murder of one Chukwudi Joseph.

The court on Monday also sentenced him to seven years imprisonment for conspiracy in the murder of the deceased person.

He was arraigned on 29th March 2023 on two-count charges bordering on conspiracy and murder.

Advertisement

READ ALSO: ‘This Is Bad And Shameful,’ Force PRO Condemns Viral Extortion Video

The charge read, “That Adedayo Olawole and others now at large at Eporo in Emure Ekiti did conspire to murder one Chukwudi Joseph.

“The offences are contrary to Sections 244 and 243 of the Criminal Law of Ekiti State Nigeria, 2021.”

One of the eyewitnesses, a cousin to the deceased, in his testimony before the court, said that he saw the defendant and some other boys hit the deceased with planks and later one of the defendant’s gang stabbed him in the left side of his chest, he fell and died before some people could get there for the rescue.

Advertisement

The prosecutor, Ibironke Odetola, called six witnesses and tendered the defendant’s statements, pictures of the deceased and other supporting documents as exhibits.

The defendant spoke in his defence through his lawyer, M.A. Daramola, and called one witness.

READ ALSO: Why I Relocated To US With My Family — Pastor Sam Adeyemi

In the judgment, Justice Jubril Aladejana said that assaulting the deceased with planks before being stabbed in the left part of his chest showed that the assailants intended to cause him grievous, bodily harm or his death.

Advertisement

The judge, who said that the prosecution had proved beyond reasonable doubt that the defendant and others at large conspired to commit the felony of murder at Eporo Ekiti on December 10, 2021, said, “Consequently, the sole issue for determination is resolved in favour of the prosecution.

“On count one (Conspiracy), the defendant is sentenced to seven years imprisonment without an option of fine;

“On Count two (Murder), the sentence of this court upon Adedayo Olawole is that you shall be hanged by the neck until you be dead, may God have mercy on your soul,” the judge declared.

In March 2024, an Ekiti State High Court, Ado Ekiti Division, sentenced a 28-year-old man, Ayodeji Alomoge, to death by hanging for killing a man having affairs with his wife.

Advertisement

Continue Reading

Metro

UPDATED: Two Die, Others Arrested In okada Riders’ Attack On Lagos Police Station

Published

on

The Lagos State Police Command has confirmed that two individuals were fatally injured and some others arrested during an attack by motorcycle riders on its Ipaja Division on Monday.

Panic had earlier ensued in a section of Lagos State when more than 100 hoodlums stormed the Ipaja Police Station.

The command’s spokesperson, SP Benjamin Hundeyin, revealed in a statement that the attack stemmed from the enforcement of the existing ban on motorcycles in the state.

Advertisement

He also revealed that over 200 motorcycles were impounded and one locally made firearm retrieved from the attackers.

READ ALSO: Court Orders Police To Evict Bayero From Palace

He wrote, “Officers of Ipaja Police Division have successfully repelled an early morning attack on their division by motorcycle operators.

“The attack came after police officers commenced the day’s enforcement of the existing ban on motorcycles in Lagos State.

Advertisement

“The attackers, who came in their hundreds, stormed the station with dangerous weapons, shooting at the officers and attempting to overrun the station.”

Hundeyin further disclosed that officers at the division defended themselves until reinforcements from the Area Command and the Rapid Response Squad arrived.

READ ALSO: Thugs Clash As anti-Abure Protesters Storm LP Secretariat

He added, “While officers and men of the division held their ground, reinforcement came from the Area Command and the Rapid Response Squad. Two of the attackers were fatally injured during the attack.

Advertisement

“However, this did not deter the officers from accomplishing their mandate, as over two hundred motorcycles were impounded and some of the attackers arrested, with one locally made firearm retrieved.”

He also emphasised that the command “will not be cowed into abdicating its responsibilities of enforcement of all duly passed laws and maintenance of law and order within the society.”

Advertisement
Continue Reading

Trending