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EFCC Docks Man For Alleged N38m Land Fraud in Aba

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The Uyo zonal office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission , on Monday, October 12, 2020, arraigned one Ikechi Romanus Friday and his company, Premium Veroni Nigeria Limited on a two-count charge bordering on obtaining by false pretence and stealing to the tune of N38m (Thirty eight million naira) before Justice Lillian Abai of the Abia State High Court sitting in Aba, Abia State.
The defendant was arrested on September 11, 2020, at 242 Aba-Owerri road, Aba, Abia state, following a petition sent to the Commission by one Justice Jeco Osondu who alleged that he paid the said sum to the defendant for the purchase of a landed property at Mbaji in Umuoji village, Ode-Ukwu autonomous community, Abia state.
According to the petitioner, Ikechi received the money from him, but refused to hand over the documents of the property which he later re-sold to another buyer and still failed to refund his money.
One of the counts against Ikechi reads; “Ikechi Romanus Friday “M” and Premium Veroni Nigeria Limited between the 31st day of October, 2019 and 5th day of February 2020, at Aba within the jurisdiction of this Court, with intent to defraud, stole by fraudulently converting to your own use, the sum of N32, 000, 000. 00 (Thirty two million naira only), property of Mr. Justice Jeco Osondu”.
The offence which contravenes the provisions of Section 383 (1), is Criminal Code Cap C80 Volume 3, Laws of Abia State of Nigeria 2005, is punishable under Section 390 of the same law.
The defendant pleaded not guilty to the charges preferred against him. In view of his plea, counsel to the EFCC, Nwandu Ukoha, prayed the court to fix a trial date and remand the defendant in the Nigeria Correctional Service’s custodial centre in the state.
But the defence counsel, Nnamdi Ahunanya. Informed the court of a pending bail application which was filed on September 29, 2020. He moved the application and prayed the court to grant the defendant bail on liberal terms.
Ukoha opposed the application and prayed the court to remand the accused and grant accelerated hearing in the matter.
The matter was thereafter adjourned to October 15, 2020 for ruling on the bail application and commencement of trial while the defendant was remanded in the Custodial Centre, Aba.

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Inmate Who Escaped From Prison in Edo Kills Neighbor Who Testified Against Him

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Police in Edo state have arrested one of the 1993 inmates who escaped during the jailbreaks at Oko and Benin prisons for killing neighbor who testified against him in court.

Recall that hoodlums broke into the premises of Benin Prison popularly known as White House and freed several inmates in one of the cells.

 Police in Edo state arrested 10 out of the 1,993 inmates of Oko Correctional Centre on Airport Road, Benin and the Benin Correctional Centre on Sapele Road who escaped on October 19 after jailbreaks, immediately returned to crime.

Speaking on the development, the state commissioner of police said “we have commenced actions against the criminal elements. It will interest you to know that 10 of the criminal elements who escaped from Oko Correctional Centre on Airport Road, Benin and the Correctional Centre on Sapele Road, Benin were also arrested.

One of them, after having escaped from Oko correctional centre, ran back to his village on the same day, to kill the person who stood as a prosecution witness in the case that took him to the correctional centre. He has been arrested and he is among the suspects.

“Another group of three escapees from the correctional centre in Benin also went ahead to snatch a Lexus Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV). Three of them met at the correctional centre and they were caught by the police.

A set of two escapees equally stole a Toyota Camry car. They also met at the correctional centre. They were arrested by Okada Division of Edo State Police Command. We have a total of ten escapees.

The guns were also recovered from the criminal elements.”

He assured the people of the state that the police “have the capacity to provide adequate security for their lives and property”

” We are leaving no stone unturned to ensure that there is total safety. Edo residents should go about their lawful businesses without fear of being molested and without fear of criminals coming to wreck violent attacks,” he said

The commissioner also said five AK-47 rifles; two locally-made exhibit guns; one locally-made gun; one Lexus 330 SUV with registration number KWL 205 AZ; one Toyota Camry saloon car with registration number LSD 231 GD; two bags of 50kg and one bag of 25kg rice and 24 crates of assorted drinks were recovered.


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RSG TO PAY N20MILLION EACH TO FAMILIES OF POLICEMEN, SOLDIERS KILLED BY IPOB

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Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, has announced N20 Million compensation to the families of each of the soldiers and policemen killed by members of proscribed Indigenous Peoples Organization of Biafra (IPOB) in Oyigbo last week.

In addition, the Governor has promised to rebuild all burnt police stations in Oyigbo and vowed to ensure that the terrorist organisation no longer exist in Rivers State.

Governor Wike stated this during a condolence visit to the Rivers State Commissioner of Police, Joseph Mukan and families of the slain policemen at the Rivers State Police Command on Wednesday.

The governor who was accompanied by the Secretary to the State Government, Dr Tammy Danagogo; the Commissioner of Information, Paulinus Nsirim; and the Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice, Professor Zacchaeus Adangor, described the gruesome murder of the policemen and soldiers as unacceptable and unfortunate.

He stressed that the State Government will support the Police to make sure that all IPOB members who masterminded the killing of the policemen and soldiers, as well as the wanton destruction of Police stations in Oyigbo are apprehended to face the full wrath of the law.

“IPOB masterminded the killing of our gallant officers of the Nigerian Police and Army. We want to state clearly that Rivers State Government will support you to make sure that any of the perpetrators of this hideous crime does not go free. Enough is enough. You cannot continue to kill our policemen who have not done anything; who have not committed any crime” he said.

Emotionally stricken by the presence of the grieving wives and children of the killed policemen, Governor Wike, vowed to ensure that IPOB will no longer exist in any part of Rivers State. According to him, the killing of policemen was one crime that the State government will never condone.

The Governor announced that the State Government has decided to pay the sum of N20 million to each of the families of those killed by IPOB members in Oyigbo.

He further assured the Police Commissioner that the State Government will rebuild all the police stations torched by IPOB, and provide necessary support to policemen whose residence were vandalised and rendered homeless.

The Commissioner of Police, Joseph Mukan, said the Governor by his decision to commiserate with the Command and the deceased families, has demonstrated he is a compassionate father of the State.

Mukan explained that the Police and the Army have taken over all IPOB stronghold in Oyigbo and will ensure that the group cease to exist anywhere within the State.

The Police Commissioner maintained that the Command will not abdicate its responsibility by ensuring that IPOB which had been declared a terrorist group by the Federal Government in 2017, continue to use Rivers State as launch pad for its terrorist attacks.

KELVIN EBIRI
Special Assistant (Media) to the Governor.
October 28, 2020

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