Illegal Indian Hemp: Court sentences man to 10 years in prison

Scale of justice

A Federal High Court sitting in Jos on Tuesday sentenced a 28-year-old man, Yusuf Mohammed to 10 year in prison for illegal possession of 638.6kg of Indian Hemp.

The NDLEA arrested Mohammed, and four others on June 6, 2016 by NDLEA officials around filling Sukwa in Jos North Local Government of Plateau with 73 bags of Indian hemp loaded in a Ford Bus and Mercedez Benz car.

The NDLEA charged Mohammed alongside Goddy Chikwuji, Julius Nduka, Sunday Justice and Adams James with trafficking of illegal substance.

Mohammed has pleaded gulty to the charge but Chikwuji, Nduka, Justice and James pleaded not guilty.

The trial Judge, Justice Dorcas Agishi, summarily sentenced Mohammed, following a prayer by NDLEA Counsel, Mr Uche Chukwu.

“`This sentence is to serve as deterrent to others who wrongly wish to indulge in such and illicit and dangerous path like you did.

“The world is aware of the devastating effects of such hard drugs and as such the Nigerian society must be cleanse of them for us to have a drug free society, ” she held.

Justice Agishi, took her time and went outside the courtroom to inspect the bags loaded in two Hilux vehicles of NDLEA before going back to continue hearing the case.

She adjourned the case until Wednesday for trial of the remaining four defendants.

The offence, the NDLEA said, is punishable under sections 11(b)(c), 20(c) 2(b), 14(b) and 1(b) of NDLEA Act Cap N30 LFN 2004 (as amended).

Chukwu. had earlier told the court that the defendants were arrested with the Indian Hemp on their way from Benin, Edo to Jos.

“My Lord, since the 73 bags are not complete to enable us tender it, we shall be applying for an adjournment to enable us bring remaining bag, ” Chukwu pleaded.

The Defence Counsel, Mr Suleiman Elijah, said that there was need for the court to verify and ascertain the correct quantity of the drugs as stated by the agency’s Exhibit Officer, Mr Etsu Banshi-Daniel.