16 May 2013, Abuja – A Federal High Court in Abuja, Wednesday, gave the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, the go-ahead to evacuate for safe keeping the petroleum products recovered from 14 suspected oil thieves currently facing prosecution for charges bordering on conspiracy and oil bunkering.
The EFCC had through an ex-parte motion brought pursuant to section 26 of the EFCC Act, 2004, prayed the court for an order granting leave to the applicant to evacuate the petroleum products conveyed by the respondents in trucks and vehicles as specified in the schedule attached to the affidavit, for safe keeping.
The recovered petroleum products are currently at the premises of Shittu Alao Barracks of the 177 Battalion, Guards Brigade, Nigerian Army, Keffi, Nasarawa State.
EFCC counsel, Elizabeth Ayodele specifically prayed the court for an order directing the Managing Director of PPMC, the Department of Petroleum Resources or the relevant arm of the NNPC to evacuate and keep in safe custody the crude oil recovered from the trucks and any further orders as the court may make in the circumstance.
Presiding judge, Justice E. S. Chukwu granted the motion as prayed and adjourned the case to May 27 for continuation of hearing.
The suspects were arrested at Toto Military checkpoint, Nasarawa State with 14 trailer load of suspected crude oil after a failed attempt to bribe their way through the checkpoint.
They are Joseph Amaechi, Israel Friday, Ubadia Francis, Abayomi Adebisi, Abdullahi Idris, Samuel Job, Onah Peter Ode, Sabo Tasha Hassan, Abdullahi Moh’d, Abubakar Abdulkadir, Ehiogu Paul, Ibrahim Saidu, Garba Mohammed and Bartholomew Onyema.