The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has arraigned 26
suspected pirates alongside a company, Sam Pam Nigeria Limited, and a
vessel, MV Neso II, before Justice Mohammed Liman of the federal high
court in Ikoyi.

The suspects were arraigned on two counts bordering on illegal dealing
in petroleum products.

Some of them include Frances Onyeama, Adebayo M. Charles, Melvin A.
Jack, Omogoye Wasiu Bolaji, Umoren Harrison Daniel, Oloyede Y.
Ademola, Arichibong Aniete James, Richard Essien David, Oke Asaki, and
Mike Simon.

Others are Godswill Emmanuel Umoh, Edu Fidelis, Miebaka Iyaka, Kinsley
Terry, Austine Abararowei, Udom Victor Jerome, Victor Uchendu,
Firstman Job, Nelson Sokarabo Solomon, Emomotimi F. Watchman, Iwuoha
Okechukwu Victor, Ogerugba Patrick (a.k.a Odafe) Emmanuel Eze, Inyang
Ruyie Grace, and Paul Obi.

One of the counts said, “That you MV Neso II, Frances Onyeama, Adebayo
M. Charles, Melvin A. Jack, Omogoye Wasiu Bolaji, Umoren Harrison
Daniel, Oloyede Y. Ademola, Arichibong Aniete James, Richard Essien
David, Oke Asaki, Mike Simon, Godswill Emmanuel Umoh, Edu Fidelis,
Miebaka Iyaka, Kinsley Terry, Austine Abararowei, Udom Victor Jerome,
Victor Uchendu, Firstman Job, Nelson Sokarabo Solomon, Emomotimi F.
Watchman, Iwuoha Okechukwu Victor, Ogerugba Patrick (a.k.a Odafe)
Emmanuel Eze, Inyang Ruyie Grace, Paul Obi, and Sam Pam Nigeria
Limited sometime within the jurisdiction of this honourable court did
conspire amongst yourselves to deal in petroleum products off the
coast of Gabon and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section
17(a) and (b) of the Miscellaneous Offences Act Cap M17 Laws of the
Federation of Nigeria (Revised Edition) 2004 and Punishable under the
same Law”.

The suspects, who were arrested by the Nigerian Navy at the Lagos
Anchorage Area and handed over to the EFCC on Monday, however, pleaded
not guilty to the charges and the prosecuting counsel, M.K Bashir,
asked the court for a trial date.

Meanwhile, counsel to the defendants, Adegboyega Adetunji, informed
the court of a pending bail application and urged the judge to grant
his clients bail.

Although the prosecution counsel opposed the application, Justice
Liman, thereafter, granted bail to the 26 defendants in the sum of N2
million each and one surety in like sum.

The surety must have property within the jurisdiction of the Court.

He added that the Vessel (MV Neso II) should produce an insurance bond
from a first-class insurance company.

Thereafter, the court adjourned the hearing of the matter until
December 9, 11 and 13, remanding 25 of the accused in prison custody
and one in the EFCC custody, pending the perfection of their bail
conditions.

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