By Iorver Mande
The Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has sentenced 10 nationals whom are Russians, Georgians, Ukrainians and Philipinos to two years imprisonment with an option of N1m fine on each count while the other four that ran away after they were bailed are to serve five years without an option of fine upon arrest.
The convicted fourteen foreigners from four different countries and three vessels were on the 10th of June 2015 arraigned before Justice Ibrahim Buba who heard and delivered the judgement on four count criminal charge of conspiracy, unlawful dealing in Petroleum products and storing petroleum products without lawful authority to import, sale and export.
Buba heard upon their conviction that, he has no difficulty at arriving at the conclusion of the matter stating that the prosecution (EFCC) has proved the case beyond reasonable doubt the conspiracy, unlawful dealing and sales of petroleum product as contained in the four count criminal charge and therefore convict the first to the fourteenth accused person as charged.
He also orders the forfeiture of the ship MT Anuket Emerald and cargo on board to the federal government and two companies Monjasa DMCC, and Glencore Energy UK Limited facing trial in the same charge are to pay N5m fine separately on each of the four counts; and finally issued a warrant of arrest on the four accused that jumped bail to subsist till when they will be arrested to serve the five year jail term.
The suspects include three Russians
( Pakhladzhian Artur, Kretov Andrey, Shkundich PVasily); three Ukrainians ( Laguta Oleksiy, Chepikov Oleksandr, Bilous Vitalli); Eight Filipinos ( Cadavis Gerardo, Baduria Benjamin, Regidor Hilarion, Naranjo Allan Antero,Patero
Christian, Alkyde Joel, Caratiquit Micheal Bryan, Ciudad Prudencio, Cabanal Anecito, Cabuquin Andres, Podutan Eduardo) and one Georgian – Agbarian Sergoand.
Earlier, counsel to the accused convicts, Babajide Koku, SAN, prayed and pleaded for mercy why the prosecution counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, prayed the court to invoke the powers of Section 1(7) of the miscellaneous offences Act.