The Delta State High Court, sitting in Kwale, Ndokwa West local government area, on Tuesday sentenced an ex-soldier and seven others to 104 years imprisonment for kidnapping the current House of Assembly speaker, Mr. Monday Igbuya.
Mr. Igbuya was allegedly kidnapped in May 2009 in Sapele, the headquarters of Sapele Local Government area by Godspower Omoniyi, an ex-soldier; Godspower Ikoro; Ernest Atteh; John Adapamu; Ife Freedom; Sunday Uba Tiemo; Kemi Koinyan; and Isaiah Mumbor. He released after six days.
SaharaReporters learned that the eight suspects, who were earlier charged to the Sapele High Court in 2011 after their arrest by security agents, were later transferred to Kwale for trial on a six-count charge of conspiracy to commit kidnapping, armed robbery and the substantive case of kidnapping and demanding with menace the sum of N100m as ransom.
In his judgement, the presiding judge, Justice O. Jaloggo-Williams, found the eight accused persons guilty on the two-count charge of kidnapping and demanding property with menace. He sentenced them to 10 years each with hard labor for kidnapping; and three years each for demanding N100m with menace.
Justice Jaloggo-Williams ruled that the accused were responsible for the kidnapping of the Speaker, but discharged them on the count of armed robbery for lack of sufficient evidence by the prosecution. The sentences will run concurrently.
The convicts were charged under the Criminal Code Law Section 364 (I) and (II), which prescribed a 10-year jail term for offenders, before the Delta House of Assembly enacted a new anti-kidnapping Law in 2016 which now prescribes life imprisonment for offenders.