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Bus conductor pleads guilty to extorting with cutlass


A 22-year-old bus conductor, Obinna Igwe, who pleaded guilty to extorting money from members of the public at cutlass-point, was on Monday in Lagos remanded at the Kirikiri Correctional Centre.

An Ikeja Magistrates’ Court, which gave the ruling, said that the defendant should remain behind bars pending review of the facts of the case and sentencing.

Igwe had pleaded guilty to a three-count charge of conspiracy, breach of peace, and unlawful possession of dangerous weapons.

Magistrate A.S. Odusanya remanded him until Feb. 23.

According to the prosecutor, Insp Emmanuel Ajayi, the defendant, and others still at large committed the offences on Jan. 23 on Awolowo Way, Ikeja.

He said that the defendant conducted himself in a manner likely to cause a breach of peace by using cutlass to harass and extort members of the public.

“The defendant and his gang members always come to the garage with dangerous weapons to extort money from motorists, traders, and passengers, among others.

“They always threatened to kill anyone who refused to comply.

“On that fateful day, the defendant with his group members came as usual but policemen, who have been receiving calls from members of the public about the activities of the defendant, stormed the scene.

“The defendant was arrested while others escaped; a cutlass was recovered from him.”

The alleged offenses contravene Sections 168, 330, and 411 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Section 330 provides for seven years imprisonment for unlawful possession of dangerous weapons while Section 411 prescribes two years jail term for conspiracy.