Naval captain gets bail after one year illegal detention

The Federal High Court in Lagos, on Monday, granted N10m bail to a naval captain, Dada Labinjo, who was said to have been in an underground detention  centre for over a year.

Justice Muslim Hassan ordered Labinjo to produce one surety, who must own a landed property in Lagos, and must show evidence of three years’ tax payment.

However, the judge ordered that Labinjo should be released to his lawyer, Jerry Omoregie, pending when he would meet the bail conditions within 15 days.

The lawyer was directed to submit his Certificate of Call to Bar to the court’s registrar as a guarantee that he would produce his client for trial.

The bail followed Labinjo’s arraignment alongside others on two counts of dealing in petroleum products without lawful authority.

Among the other defendants was Labinjo’s wife, Bola, a Lieutenant Commander in the navy.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission told the court that the defendants conspired among themselves between August and October 2018 to deal in Automative Gas Oil (diesel) without an appropriate licence.

According to the EFCC, the defendants committed the offences “within the Nigerian maritime domain and the Gulf of Guinea.”

The prosecution said they acted contrary to sections 3 (6) and 1 (19) (a) (b) of the Miscellaneous Offences Act, Cap. M17, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria (revised edition), 2004, and were liable to be punished under Section 1(17) of the same Act.

But the defendants pleaded not guilty to the charges.

The other defendants were admitted to bail on terms similar to Labinjo’s.

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