Court Convicts Mother Of 3 For Trafficking In Indian Hemp
Justice Akintayo Aluko of a Lagos Federal High Court, today, convicted a mother of three, Ifeanyi Happiness, for attempted to illegally export 2.1 kilograms of Cannabis Sativa, popularly called indian hemp.
Justice Aluko has however reserved till February 18, to sentence the convited woman.
The mother of three was convicted after pleaded guilty to two counts charge of illegal dealing in the banned weed, made against her by the National Drug Laws Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), when she was brought before the court today.
The prosecutor, Mr. Abu Ibrahim had told the court that the convicted woman had on December 2, 2021, at Skyway Handling Company Limited (SAHCOL) Export Shed, a Customs Area/Point of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja-Lagos procured one Olomofe Olaide Olayemi, to commit the act.
He told the court that the offences committed by the convict, are Section 21 (2)(d) and 11(b) of National Drug Law Enforcement Agency Act, Cap. N30, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 and punishable under Section 11(b) of the same Act.
Following the Convict’s plea, the prosecutor, Abu urged the court to convict and sentence her according to the sections 274(2) and 35(2) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015.
However, counsel to the convicted woman, Bolanle Kolawole, in her allocutus, pleaded with the court to give her client option of fine as she is a first time offender with three young children to cater for.
Bolanle also told the court that her client had promised to assist the prosecuting agency in apprehending one Komolafe, who was said to have be behind the crime committed by the convict.
The prosecutor, while not objection to minimal custodian sentence of the convict, vehemently objected to option of fine in lieu of custodian sentence.
In the same vain, another woman, Eghobamien Benedicta, of 13, Mike Otutu, Grace Land Estate, Ajah, Lagos State, was arraigned before Justice Aluko for alleged attempt to unlawfully export 7 kilograms of Cannabis Sativa, also know as Indian Hemp.
The prosecutor, Abu Ibrahim, while arraigning the defendant before the court said she was arrested on December 11, 2021 at Skyway Aviation Handling Company Limited (SAHCOL) Export Shed, a Customs Area/Point of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja-Lagos during the examination of cargo to Dubai, United Arab Emirates, UAE.
He told the court that the offence committed by the defendant was contrary to and punishable under section 11(b) of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency Act Cap. N30, Laws of the Federation of f Nigeria, 2004.
The defendant however pleaded not guilty to the charge.
With the not guilty plea of the defendant, the prosecutor asked for a trial date, and also urged the court to remand the defendant in the custody of the Nigerian Correctional Services (NCoS) till the determination of the charge.
But defendant’s counsel Mr. Uche Okoronkwo of Minerva Legal, told the court that the defendant’s bail appllication has been filed and same has been served on the prosecutor.
He pleaded with the court to admit the defendant to bail in the most liberal terms.
In his ruling of bail appllication, Justice Aluko admitted bail to the defendant in the sum of N5 million with one surety in like sum.
The surety according to the judge me yet be a landed property owner with Title of Deed, and residing in Lagos. He added that the surety must show evidence of three years tax, means of livelihood with evidence of payment of utility bills.
The judge while adjourned till May 4, for commencement of trial, ordered that the defendant be remanded in NCoS custody, till the perfection of bail terms