Story by Gbenga Ogunbufunmi
The National Agency for Food, Drug Administration Control (NAFDAC), today, re- arraigned a businessman, Benjamin Ojukwu, before a Federal High Court, Lagos, for allegedly producing and distributing fake wines and other alcoholic drinks.
The defendant, who has his stores at 56, Market Street and 42, Alasalatu Street, both in Mushin, Lagos, according to NAFDAC, was arrested on April 3, 2018.
NAFDAC in the six count charge marked FHC/L/111c/18, alleged unlawful production of fake wines, warehousing, distribution and unlawful possession of the same products.
Some of the fake wines and gins retrieved from the defendant’s stores are: Ciroc Vodka, Gordon’s, Skyy Vodka, Best Whisky, Grap Atros, Gin Mc Dry Gin, Best Dry Gin (Sachets), Grant’s, 8Pm Whisky, Martell Blue Swift, Black Colt Coffee Rum, Olemeca Blue, Vitimet, Hennessy, Seaman, Martel, Red Label, Lord’s Gin, Gin Black Vodka, Jameson Irish Whisky, Raphael Circle Whisky, Vodka, Seagram Whisky, Eagle Shnapps Majesty, Squadron Dask Rum, White and Blue Whisky, Action Bitter and Chivas Regal,
Others include: AK 47 Vodka, Glenfiddich, Courvoisier, Blue Cocktail, Red Label, American Honey, Elder’s Aromatic, Reviseur, Contmi, Mc Dowell, Remy Martins, Cheisea, Label Celebration Wine, Black and Blue Whisky, Absolute Yodka, Hennessy v.s.o.p, Black and Gold, Mega McGold, Monsieur Pascal, St. Crusade, Eloi, Dorobucci, 6th Sense, Pilas Dry Gin, Flirt odka, Absolute, White and Blue Whisky, Aromatic Schnapps, Biggor, special Best Label 5 Blended Whisky, Alfonso 1 Solera Wine and other liquid substance in a gallon.
The offences committed by the prosecutor, O. Uba are contrary to sections 1(a) of the counterfeit and Fake Drugs and Unwholesome proceed foods (miscellaneous provision) Act Cap. C34 and Section 6 of the food and drug Actt. Cap. F32 Laws of the Federation, 2004, and punishable under sections 3(1)(a), 6(1)(a) and 8 of the same Act.
The defendant pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Following the defendant’s not guilty plea, the prosecutor asked the court for a trial date.
The defendant’s lawyer, Prosper Ojakovo, while conceding to the trial date asked requested by the prosecutor, urged the court to let his client continue with the bail terms admitted him by Justice Hadiza Rabiu-Shagari, when he was first arraigned before the the court.
Justice Shagari, had on June 6, 2018, admitted the defendant to bail in the sum of N2 million with sureties in the same sum.
Justice I. N. Oweibo, while adjourned the matter till May 7, for the commencement of the defendant’s trial, ordered that he should continue with the earlier bail terms by Justice Shagari.