A Federal High Court, Lagos, has sentenced one Nnamdi Okoye and Ikechukwu Ezeogwum to a total of eight years six months imprisonment, for committing felony, Forgery, Unlawful Possession of the Trade Mark of Above Oil Sheen Hair Spray products and defrauding Dubas N Ches Commercial Company Limited owner of the Trade Mark of their valuable .
The court presided over by Justice Okon Efiriti Abang sentenced the two traders to the jail terms on Thursday, while delivering judgment in a nine years old Criminal trial.
Reviewing the facts of the case, Justice Abang said that in analysing the evidence before him, there is a concrete evidence that there is a link between the first and second convicts, as the second convict admitted in his statement to the police that he gave the product to the first convict and also admitted before the police that he is not the first to produce the product in question.
Abang also said that the second prosecution witness, who is a staff of PW1, ( owner of the Trade Mark) also link the first convict to the crime, saying that she went to the shop of the first convict and bought three cartons of the product and obtained receipt from the first convict.
The trial judge added that there is overwhelming evidence that the convicts conspired together to forge the trade mark of the original owner and consequently convicted both of them on the four count charge.
Sentencing the convicts, Justice Abang said, “The convicts did not show remorse in this matter. I see convicts as unrepentant criminals, who are reaping from where they did not sow. They intentionally forged the product; they have opportunity to resolve the matter amicable but hardened their minds.
“I therefore sentenced both convicts to seven years imprisonment each on count one, seven years imprisonment each on count two, six months on counts three and four respectively”.
Justice Abang said the term of imprisonment should start on Thursday and to run concurrently
The two convicts and others said to be at large, according to the charge marked FHC/L/225c/2009, have sometime between April 2009 and May 2009 at the Trade Fair Complex along Badagry Expressway Lagos conspired together to commit felony to wit: Forgery, Unlawful Possession Trade Mark of Above Oil Sheen Hair Spray products and defrauding Dubas N Ches Commercial Company Limited of their valuable (I.e. illegal sales of “Above Oil Sheen Hair Spray” products and stealing, thereby committing an offence punishable under Section 516 of the criminal code Act cap 038 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004
Count 1: That you Nnamdi Okoye (M) Ikechukwu Ezeogwum (M) and others still at large sometime between April 2009 and May 2009 at above Plaza Trade Fair Complex along Badagry Expressway Lagos in the Lagos Judicial Division did conspire together to commit felony to wit: Forgery, Unlawful Possession Trade Mark of Above Oil Sheen Hair Spray products and defrauding Dubas N Ches Commercial Company Limited of their valuable (I.e. illegal sales of “Above Oil Sheen Hair Spray” products and stealing and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 516 of the criminal code Act cap 038 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.
The convicts, Nnamdi Okoye, Ike Chukwu Ezeogwum and others stlll at large were said to have on the same date with intent to defraud Dubas “N” Ches Commercial Limited Company forged the trade Mark called “Above Oil Sheen Hair Spray of Dubas “N” Ches Commercial Company purporting same to be company’s , products/trade mark with intent that it may be used or acted upon as genuine whether in Lagos or elsewhere to the prejudice of any person believing it to be valid and thereby committed an offence punishable under section 3 (3) (b) of the merchandise marks Act Cap 773 laws of the Federation of Nigeria 1990 as amended
The two convicts were also said to have knowingly have unlawfully in their possession/control and or offer for sale or store some quantity of 30.