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Illegal Oil Dealers Arraigned

Nine suspected illegal dealers of petroleum products were arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Lagos office, on Thursday, June 14. They were arraigned before Justice Hadiza Rabiu Shagari of the Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos on a three-count charge bordering on conspiracy. The suspects, who were charged alongside a vessel, MT Queen of Peace and three companies, Macker Fender Limited, Machalis International Limited and Ayonok Ventures Limited are:

Shadrack Eneogwu, Ojo Olagoke Christopher, Atolagbe Hakeem, Daniel Noan Oluwatunbi, John Kwane Amissah and Jonathan Kumah Tetteh. During the proceedings, the prosecution counsel, Idris Abdullah Muhammed, told the court that though the fifth defendant, Eneogwu, was not in court, he was represented by his counsel. He, therefore, prayed the court to read the charges to the suspects.

One of the counts reads: “That MT Queen of Peace and three companies: Macker Fender Limited, Machalis International Limited and Ayonok Ventures Limited, Shadrack Eneogwu, Ojo Olagoke Christopher, Atolagbe Hakeem, Daniel Noan Oluwatunbi, John Kwane Amissah and Jonathan Kumah Tetteh on the 9th day of November, 2017 in Lagos within the jurisdiction of this Honourable court conspired amongst yourselves to commit an offence to wit; dealing in 130 metric tonnes of Low Pour Fuel Oil, LPFOL, and 120 metric tonnes of Automotive Gas Oil, AGO, without appropriate licence and thereby committed and offence contrary to Section 3 (60) of the Miscellaneous Offences Act, Cap M17, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 and punishable under Section 1 (17) of the same Act.” The suspects pleaded not guilty to the charges when they were read to them.

The prosecution counsel asked the court for a trial date and pleaded that the suspects be remanded in prison custody. Counsel to the fourth and sixth defendants, Olalekan Ojo, moved an oral application for bail on behalf of his clients.

Also, counsel to the first, second, third, fifth, seventh, eighth, ninth and tenth defendants, Dorothy Bassey, prayed the court to give her a short date to file proper bail applications on behalf of her clients, saying that she was served with the charge this morning. Justice Shagari adjourned the case till June 26, 2018 for hearing of the bail applications and ordered the defendants to be remanded in prison custody.

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