Fake ‘Military Officer’ Arraigned In Benin For Alleged Human Trafficking
A 35-year-old man, Mr Kilo Ken, also known, Kingsley Egharevba, was on Thursday, April 27, arraigned at the National Industrial Court in Benin for alleged human trafficking.
The suspect who allegedly impersonated a Nigerian Army officer was arraigned in the court by the Benin Zonal Command of the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP).
It was gathered that the suspect was allegedly parading himself as an Army officer to carry out the crimes when he was arrested by the officers of the Army and handled over to NAPTIP for prosecution.
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He appeared in court on a two-count charge of assisting one Nifemi Afolabi (F) a.k a Halima, now at large for organizing foreign travels for a victim, who promoted prostitution and knowing that the victim will be forced into prostitution in Libya.
When the charges were read to him, the suspect pleaded not guilty to offences.
NAPTIP counsel, Mrs Oburoh Victoria Okanigbuan said the offences committed by the victim are contrary to and punishable under section 18 and section 14(b) respectively of the trafficking in persons Prohibition Enforcement and Administrative Act, 2015.
Oburoh said the suspect committed the offences in Benin City in October 2019.
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The presiding judge, Justice A.A Adewemimo, who adjourned the case to June 15, 2023 for hearing, ordered the suspects to continue with the administrative bail pending when the application for his bail is formally filed before the court.
One Feared Dead As Pirates Hijack Two Passenger Boats In Rivers
A female passenger has been feared dead after suspected pirates hijacked two boats along the waterways of Rivers State on Monday.
The passengers were said to be travelling from Abonema to Kula, both in the Akuku-Toru Local Government Area of the state, when the pirates struck mid-sea.
The maritime union workers said the boats were each carrying 12 passengers, most of whom jumped into the river in a bid to escape abduction.
Confirming the incident, the Chairman of the Nigeria Maritime Union Workers in Rivers State, Nigeria, Israel Pepple, expressed worry that attacks along the waterways have resurfaced.
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People said he was notified about the incident by some of his unit officials, who put calls through to him.
He stated, “My unit chairman in Abonnema and that of the Kula unit called to my attention that two of their boats were hijacked by pirates.
“So the information they gave us initially was that a lady was also taken away out of the 24 passengers.
“But at about 12 p.m., they called back to inform me that the lady was dead and that she was floating on the water.
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“They later went and carried her. As I speak with you, she (corpse) is in Abonnema, and they have reported the matter to the marine police in Abonnema.”
He appealed to the state governor, Siminialayi Fubara, to prioritise security along the waterways.
“For now, we are talking about security. You have to secure the waterways. The waterways must be secured for us, our passengers, and goods to move.
“That is the most important thing. So let them beef up the security. We need more gunboats and we need increased security patrol from the joint task force, especially the checkpoints.
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“We have earlier proposed that houseboats and security personnel be positioned in some strategic areas so that when this attack happens, they can communicate and stop these criminals from getting away.
“But if you go around, you will see that the houseboats are kept only where the Federal Government interests are and not the interests of the people.”
When contacted, the State Police Public Relations Officer, Grace Iringe-Koko, confirmed the incident, saying investigations were ongoing.
“Yes, we are aware, but no arrest for now.. investigation is ongoing to apprehend the culprits and make them face the law,” she stated.
Two Bankers Arraigned For Alleged N20m Theft
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, on Tuesday, arraigned two bankers, Freeman Jacob and Umar Abdullahi before Justice Simon Akpah Amobeda of the Federal High Court, Kano on a three-count charge of conspiracy and stealing.
The commission also arraigned two others – Ahmed Bashir and Abdulhakim Musa (aka Gandu) for working with the duo in 2020.
According to the commission, the defendants allegedly conspired among themselves to produce an ATM card in the name of one Alhaji Sani Muntari.
They used the same to steal the sum of N20,000,000 from his bank.
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One of the charges reads, “That you, Freeman Austin Jacob, Umar Abdullahi, sometime in February 2020, at Kano within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, connived with Ahmed Bashir and Abdulhakim Musa to prime and issued Automated Teller Machine card” from a commercial bank account number belonging to one Alhaji Sani Mutari without the knowledge or consent of the said customer and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 14 (7) of the Cybercrimes (Prohibition, Prevention, Etc,) Act, 2015.
The defendants perpetrated the fraud by using the account holder’s SIM card, which was stolen by Bashir, the third defendant, to produce an ATM card with the help of the first and second defendants.
It added that the investigation traced some of the proceeds of the theft to the bank account of the fourth defendant, Abdulkarim Musa, a friend of the third defendant, Ahmed Bashir.
However, all the defendants pleaded not guilty.
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Counsel for the prosecution, Aisha Tahar Habib prayed that the defendants be remanded and urged the court to fix a date for the commencement of trial.
Counsel representing the 1st and 2nd defendants made an oral bail application on behalf of his clients which was opposed by the prosecution counsel on the grounds that the application ought to be formal.
L.A Umar who represented the 4th defendant informed that she intends to file a formal bail application and subsequently prayed to the court for a date to do the same and serve the prosecution.
After listening to the parties’ submissions, Justice Amobeda agreed with the prosecution that bail applications should be made formally as the court is a court of record.
He subsequently remanded the defendant and adjourned the matter till June 26, 2023, for hearing of bail applications and commencement of trial.
JUST IN: Suspected Assassins Kill UI Professor In Ibadan
A professor at the University of Ibadan, Opeyemi Isaac Ajewole, has been killed by suspected assassins.
It was gathered that the don was killed while returning to his home in the Moniya area of Ibadan on Monday evening.
His corpse has been deposited at UI Anatomy, it was gathered.
A source in the university told our correspondent that Ajewole’s car was taken away after he was shot dead.
One of the friends of the deceased, Olukayode Ogunsanwo, also confirmed the death of the don to DAILY POST on Tuesday.
The friend who was in a sober mood, simply said, “Yes. It is true. It is true”.
Ajewole, until his death, was a lecturer in the Department of Forest Resources Management of the university.
He was born on 6 March 1962.
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Principal Assistant Registrar, Public Communications, at the university, Joke Akinpelu, when contacted, also confirmed the incident to DAILY POST on Tuesday.
Akinpelu, who did not give further information, said, “Yes, it is true. But we are not sure if it is armed robbers or hired assassins.
“He was killed yesterday. The incident happened yesterday”.
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