Court Issues Bench Warrant Against Businessman Over Alleged Land Grabbing
A Tafawa Balewa High Court of Lagos State, has issued a Bench warrant of arrest against a businessman, Gabriel Okafor Uzondu, who has failed to appear before the court to take his plea on charges of conspiracy, conduct likely to cause breach of public peace, land grabbing and encroachment with weapons made against him by the men of IGP Monitoring Unit Abuja.
Justice Serifat Sonaike, who presided over the court, ordered the issuance of the bench warrant against the defendant, after the prosecutor, Barrister Morufu Animashaun, informed the court that the defendant has flagrantly failed and refused to appear in court, despite being served repeatedly with the hearing notice.
The prosecutor told the court that the bench warrant will compel the defendant’s appearance in court.
Justice Sonaike after listening to the prosecutor’s submission, ordered that a Bench warrant of arrest and prosecution of the defendant be issued.
The judge has consequently adjourned the matter till September 21, for defendant’s arraignment.
The police in a charge marked LD/16814/2021, alleged that the defendant and others now at large, had on September 25, 2019, while armed with dangerous weapons, conspired among themselves and forcefully took over possession of land being occupied by the Association of Progressive Traders of Nigeria of International Trade Fair Complex, Ojo, Lagos.
The police also alleged that the defendant and others now at large, in their bid to take over the land, caused breach of public peace and that without lawful authority used violence for the purpose of securing entry into the said land.
The offences according to the prosecutor, Barrister Animashaun, contravened Sections section 411; 52 and 168(2) of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015. And sections 2 (3); 7 and 3 (1)(3)(b)(4)(a)(b) and (1) of the Properties Protections Law, 2016.