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EFCC Charges Two Indians To Court For Illegal Oil Deals

Two Indians docked for illegal oil dealings in Nigeria

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Lagos Zonal Office, on Wednesday, June 24, 2020, arraigned two suspected illegal oil dealers, Akash Kumar and Vishal Guleria, before Justice Rilwan M. Aikawa of the Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos.

They were arraigned for offences bordering on alleged illegal dealing in petroleum products.

The defendants, who are both Indians, were arrested aboard a vessel, M.V. Bount, by the Nigerian Navy and subsequently handed over to the Commission for prosecution.

One of the counts read: “That you, M.V. Bount and Akash Kumar, on the 31st day of January 2020, within the jurisdiction of this honourable court, conspired among yourselves to commit an offence to wit:dealing in 45 metric tons of petroleum products without appropriate licence and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 3(6) of the Miscellaneous Offences Act Cap M17, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004, and punishable under Section 1(17) of the same Act.”

Another count read: “That you, M.V. Bount and Vishal Guleria , on the 31st day of January 2020, within the jurisdiction of this honourable court, without license dealt in 45 metric tons of petroleum products and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 1(17) of the Miscellaneous Offences Act, Cap M17, Laws of the Federation if Nigeria, 2004.”

The defendants separately pleaded not guilty to the charges preferred against them by the EFCC.

In view of their pleas, the prosecution counsel, Usman Buhari, prayed the court for a date to commence trial and for the defendants to be remanded in the EFCC custody, in the interim, pending their transfer to the isolation centre of the Nigerian Correctional Services (NCS).

Consequently, Justice Aikawa adjourned the matter involving the first defendant, Kumar, to October 13, 2020 for commencement of trial and also ordered that he be remanded in the EFCC custody, in the interim, and later in the NCS if need be.

The judge also adjourned to October 14, 2020 for commencement of trial of the second defendant, Guleria, and also ordered that he be remanded in the EFCC custody, in the interim, and later in the NCS if need be.

Source: Naija News

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