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11 suspects in Port Harcourt Prison over oil theft



– Nine foreigners have been remanded in a Port Harcourt prison for their alleged involvement in oil theft

– The foreigners include Ukrainians, Pakistani and Ghanaian

– They were arraigned alongside two Nigerians and a company by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) A Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt has ordered the remand of nine foreigners in prison for alleged oil theft.

Mohammed Ejaz, Naseer Khan (Pakistani), Oleksandr Nazarenko, Oleksandr Kashernvi (Ukrainians), Romeo Annang, Francis Ahorlu, Kwesi Attah( Ghanaian), Victor Mikpayi (Beninois ) and Fredrik Fatin Omenu (Indonesian).

They are to be remanded alongside two Nigerians,Victor Azebiri and David Otuhohi, a company, Asztral Shipping Corporation SA, and a Vessel, MT. TECNE ( a.k.a MT STAR).

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in a statement said Justice J.K Omotosho in his ruling ordered the remand of the suspects pending arraignment and hearing of a 4-count charges against them. They were arraigned alongside two Nigerians and a company.

The charges borders on conspiracy, dealing in petroleum products without a license and tampering with oil pipelines. At the commencement of the earlier arraignment on Wednesday, August 30, counsel to the EFCC, Kayode Oni applied for an ex-parte leave of the court. The EFCC in its applications prayed the court to hear the defendants’ charge filed during the annual vacation of the court. The leave was granted by the judge. They were arraigned alongside two Nigerians and a company.

Also, counsel representing the second to eleventh defendants, Abiye Atorudibo, however notified the court that the fifth, sixth and eleventh defendants who are Ukrainians and Indonesians are not proficient in English language.

The lawyer requested that the prosecution provide interpreters for the accused persons. In response, Oni asked for, a short adjournment to get interpreters for some of the foreigners and remand the defendants in prison as the EFCC’s cell was congested. The court further adjourned the matter to Wednesday, September 6, for arraignment and hearing on the matter.

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