A Benin High Court in Edo State has convicted and sentenced four welders to seven years imprisonment.
The four defendants; Isaac Ogundimu, John Odaro, Andrew Egharevba and Omorogbe Jacob, executive members of the Edo State Welders Association(ESWA) we’re accused of converting 15 million naira disbursed by the Edo State Government to the association.
The defendant were arraigned in 2017 on a 15-count charge bordering on conspiracy, stealing by conversion and forgery, contrary to the Bendel State Criminal Code Law 1976 as applicable in Edo State and punishable under Section 390 (9) of the same law.
Upon arraignment, the four defendants pleaded not guilty setting the stage for full trial. To prove the allegations against the defendants the prosecution counsel, Moses Arumemi, Austin Ozigbu, Onyeka Ekweozor and Ibrahim Mohammed, called five witnesses and tendered eight exhibits while the defendants filed a no case submission which was dismissed by the court and were ordered to enter their defence.
Justice Ohimai Ovbiagele in her judgement found the defendants guilty, convicted and sentenced them to seven years imprisonment or a fine of N650, 000 each