From: Blessing Iruoma, Port Harcourt
A Chief Magistrate Court sitting in the Port Harcourt Magisterial District, has remanded two alleged oil pipeline vandals in prison custody, pending the outcome of the advice of Director of Public Prosecution.
The accused persons, Uchenna Abiazieme, 20 and Udochukwu George 24, who were first arraigned in court 1 on April 19, 2013, are facing three count charge in suit number PMC/791c/2013.
According to the first charge against the accused persons in March 2013, at 15 Mini-Manifold, Obrikom in Port Harcourt, they conspired among themselves to commit felony of wit: tempering with oil pipeline and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 3(6) of miscellaneous offence Act Cap. M17 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004.
In count II, it states, “That you Uchenna Abiazieme and AUdochukwu George and others at large on the same date and place in the aforesaid Magisterial District did wilfully and unlawfully break, damage or disconnect or otherwise tamper with oil pipeline meant for Transportation of Crude Oil or Refined Oil and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 1(7) (a)(b) of the miscellaneous offences Act Cap. M17 Laws of the federation of Nigeria 2004”.
The accused could not apply for summary trial, as the court turned down their lawyer’s plea for bail.
Objecting to the bail, the Prosecutor, Sergeant Aaron Nsirem, said the court lacks jurisdiction to grant them bail, stressing that the crime committed is liable to imprisonment.
Adhering to the prosecutor’s advice, the Presiding Magistrate, Emmanuel C. Woke, directed that their case file be sent to the Director of Public Prosecution for legal advice.
The matter was adjourned till June 20, 2013 for mention, while the accused persons were remanded in prison custody.