Five remanded for setting houses ablaze in Ebonyi

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An Ebonyi State Magistrates’ Court sitting in Abakaliki, on Monday, remanded in a correctional facility one Nwolodo Nweze, 55; Mbam Nwibo, 65; Mathias Nwolodo, 35; Chukwuemeka Aleke, 32; and John Aleke, 33, for their alleged involvement in arson.

The accused were arraigned before on two counts of arson and conspiracy.

The suspects, Southern City News, gathered, burnt down four houses belonging to one Nwofoke Nweze in December 2017.

They were said to have committed the offences at the Ndinweze community in the Izzi Local Government Area of the state.

The police prosecutor, Inspector Chinedu Mbam, told the court that the offences were punishable under sections 516A (a) and 433 (a) of the Criminal Code, Cap. 33, Vol. 1, Laws of Ebonyi State of Nigeria, 2009.

The charges read, “That you Nwolodo Nweze, Mbam Nwibo, Mathias Nwolodo, Chukwuemeka Aleke, John Aleke and others now at large, sometime in December 2017 at the Ndinweze community, Izzi, in the jurisdiction of this honourable court, did conspire among yourselves to commit felony to wit; arson, thereby committing an offence punishable under Section 516A (a) of the Criminal Code, Cap. 33, Vol. 1, Laws of Ebonyi State of Nigeria, 2009.

That you Nwolodo Nweze, Mbam Nwibo, Mathias Nwolodo, Chukwuemeka Aleke, John Aleke and others now at large, on the same date and place in the aforementioned magisterial district, did set four dwelling houses of one Nwofoke Nweze on fire, thereby committing an offence punishable under Section 433 (a) of the Criminal Code, Cap. 33, Vol. 1, Laws of Ebonyi State of Nigeria, 2009.”

The defence counsel applied to the court for his clients to be admitted to bail.

But the court did not grant the application, maintaining that the offences were beyond its jurisdiction to entertain.

The Chief Magistrate, Nnenna Onuoha, directed that the suspects be remanded in the Nigerian Correctional Centre, Abakaliki, while their case file should be transferred to the Director of Public Prosecutions in the state for necessary advice.

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