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Benue Lawmaker Sent to Jail For Abduction and Conspiracy

A lawmaker in the Benue State House of Assembly, has been sent to prison for belonging to a gang of armed robbers and terrorists who abducted the staff of Apin Public Health Initiatives.

The member representing Katsina-Ala State Constituency, Hon. Jonathan Agbidye, was ordered to be remanded in prison for alleged kidnapping, armed robbery and criminal conspiracy.

Justice Isaac Ajim of the Makurdi Chief Magistrate Court, remanded the All Progressives Congress lawmaker alongside one other, Denen Zuamo, of Katsina-Ala town, for the alleged offences, on Friday, August 21, 2020.

The police prosecutor, Fidelis Ogbobe, had told the court that on May 22, 2018, a Toyota Hilux van with registration number SWA-215-FM and other valuables belonging to Apin Public Health Initiatives was stolenat gunpoint along Katsina-Ala-Tordonga Road in Katsina-Ala Local Government Area of the state to an unknown destination.

He said, “during Police investigation, Mr. Agbidye and Zuamo of Katsina/Ala township were arrested with the said vehicle which had been re-registered with the number MKD-992-AD in Makurdi.”

Ogbobe stated that further investigation revealed that Agbidye, Zuamo and others now at large allegedly belong to a gang of armed robbers and terrorists headed by one wanted kingpin, Terwase Akwaza alias ‘Ghana’ who conspired, snatched, robbed and also abducted the staff of Apin Public Health Initiatives.

According to him, “the accused persons committed the offense contrary to section 1(2) A and B and section 6(b) of the Robbery and Fire Arms(Special Provisions) Act, 2004, and Hostage, Kidnapping, Secret Cult and Similar Activities Law of Benue State, 2017.”

Though no plea was taken for want of jurisdiction, the Prosecuting Counsel, told the court that investigation into the matter was ongoing and applied for another date to enable the police to complete their investigation.

Counsel to the accused persons, Mr. Terhemen Aorabee did not oppose the application but informed the court that he would formally apply for the bail of his clients on another date.

The trial Chief Magistrate adjourned the case to October 12, 2020, and ordered that the accused persons be remanded at the Federal Correctional Facility in Makurdi pending the application for their bail.

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