Story By Gbenga Ogunbufunmi
A 31 year-old graduate of Imo State University, Ilomuanya Jennifer Eberechukwu, was today, convicted and sentenced to two years Imprisonment by a Federal High Court. Lagos for exporting 2.220 kilogrammes of cannabis sativa, also known as Indian hemp.
Justice Chuka Austine Obiozor, who presided over the count, sentenced the graduate of Guarding and Counseling, the jail-term after she pleaded guilty to one count charge of unlawful export of the banned weed, levelled against her by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).
Justice Obiozor, however, gave the convict and option of N250,000, 00 in lieu of jail term.
The convict, a resident of 3, Raji Street, Mosafejo, Alaba International Market, Lagos, was arrested by the NDLEA Operatives, on February 17, 2021, at the Examination Bay of SAHCO Export Shed of Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, after the agent she gave the ‘items’ to for clearance was apprehended.
She was charged before Justice Obiozor’s court, on one count charge of unlawful export of the banned weed
The offence, according to the prosecutor, Mr. Abu Ibrahim, is contrary to and punishable under Section 11(b) of National Drug Law Enforcement Agency Act, Cap. N30, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.
The convict then pleaded guilty to the charge and following her guilty plea, the presided judge, ordered the prosecutor to review the facts of the matter.
In reviewing the facts of the charge, the prosecutor after telling the court how the convict concealed the banned weed in some food products, also tendered some documentary exhibits, which includes the Convict’s extra judicial statement, forensic text analysis, samples and parcel of the seized drugs among others which were admitted by the court as exhibits A to H series.
Upon reviewing the facts of the charge, the prosecutor urged the court to convict and sentence her accordingly.
But the convict in her plea for mercy, denied knowing the content of the parcel she gave to the agent, not until when she was apprehended by the NDLEA Operatives.
She told the court that it was her fiance based in Dubai that sent someone to give her the parcel for onward export to him.
She thereafter pleaded with the court to tamper Justice with mercy in sentencing her, while she promised never to engage in such act again.
Justice Obiozor, in his judgment, after citing series of legal authorities, sentenced her to two years Imprisonment with the option of N250, 000, 00.