A Warri Chief Magistrates’ Court has Arraigned Ayirimi Emami, the deposed Ologbotsere of Warri Kingdom for allegedly stealing two royal crowns belonging to Warri Kingdom and said to be worth N2 billion.
The Nigeria Police Force had in August declared two sons of the late Olu of Warri, Ogiame Ikenwoli Godfrey Emiko, wanted for stealing the royal crowns.
According to reports, Prince Oyowoli Emiko and Prince Omatsuli Emiko were declared wanted for breaking into the private apartment of Olu of Warri in Delta State and stealing the crowns.
It was also learnt that the Federal High Court in Benin City, Edo State, had issued warrants of arrest for both men. A special police gazette had also declared both men wanting.
It was issued by the Force Criminal Investigation Department Zone ‘5’ Headquarters, Benin City on the orders of the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Baba Alkali.
However, Ayirimi was on Wednesday charged along with others now at large.
They were said to have allegedly committed the offence around 11.30 pm on March 30 this year in the residence of the Olu of Warri, the charge sheet with No: MW/178 C/ 2021 revealed.
The statement reads, “That you Chief Ayirimi Emami (m) and others now at large on 30th of March, 2021 at about 11:30 pm at Olu of Warri Palace, Warri did conspire among yourselves to commit felony, to wit, Burglary and Stealing and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 516 of the Criminal Code Cap C21 Vol. 1, Laws of Delta 2006.
“That you Chief Ayirimi Emami (m) and others now at large on 30th of March, 2021 at about 11:30 pm at Olu of Warri Palace, Warri, in Warri in Warri Magisterial District, with intent to commit a felony broke into a dwelling house of the Olu of Warri and thereby committed an Offence Punishable Under Section 411 of the Criminal Code Cap C21 Vol. 1, Laws of Delta 2006.
“That you Ayirimi Emami (m) and others now at large on the 30th March, 2021 at about 11:30 pm at Olu of Palace, Warri, in Warri Magisterial District did steal two crowns valued at Two Billion Naira, properties of Itsekiri Kingdom and thereby committed an Offence Punishable Under Section 390 (9) of the Criminal Code Cap C21 Vol. 1, Laws of Delta 2006."
Meanwhile, Ayirimi pleaded not guilty to the three charges, while his lead counsel, Mr. Emmanuel Uti, urged the court to grant his client bail.
The defence lawyer said the accused person was willing and ready to appear in court any time he was called to appear.
Police prosecuting counsel, SP Sunday Irabor, asserted that the discretion of granting bail lied with the court. He, however, called for stringent bail conditions, stressing that the sureties must be reliable.
Chief Magistrate Diejomaoh granted the accused bail with two sureties and N2 million each.
The sureties, she ruled, must be on Grade Level 15 in the civil service and they must provide their passports and photographs as well as national means of identification.
The case was adjourned till January 19, 2022, for hearing.