Magistrate Adeola Olatunbosun On Wednesday, issued an order directing the detention of five individuals in police custody until the availability of legal counsel from the Directorate of Public Prosecution. The men had been charged with carrying Indian hemp and two bags of counterfeit foreign currency.
The accused, identified as Francis Omwukei, 26, Kingsley Ude, 33, Umar Idris, 37, Eyo, 27, and Bright Ahamefula, 26, were hauled before a Yaba Magistrates’ Court on a two-count charge of possession of Indian hemp and bogus foreign money, including pounds sterling and dollars.
The prosecutor, Rita Momoh, told the court that the defendants were arrested on August 9, 2023, at White Sand, Ijora, Lagos State.
According to Momoh, the defendants were caught having substances suspected to be Indian hemp and displaying them in public, an offence that was capable of causing a breach of peace.
She added that the offence contravened and is punishable under Sections 329 and 442 of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State of Nigeria.
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The charge read in part, “That you, Francis Omwukei, Kingsley Ude, Umar Idris, Eyo, and Bright Ahamefula, on August 9, 2023, at White Sand, Ijora, in Lagos, in the Lagos State Magisterial District, did unlawfully had in your possession leaves suspected to be Indian hemp and two bags containing fake US Dollar currency, and pounds sterling currency, and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 329 of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State of Nigeria, 2015.”
The defendants, however, pleaded not guilty to the charges.
The magistrate ordered that in the absence of a remand warrant, the defendants be kept in police custody for seven days, while the police duplicate and send the file to the DPP for legal advice.
Olatunbosun adjourned the case till August 23, 2023, for DPP advice