Court jails man for oil theft in Port Harcourt

One Mustapha Tijani has been convicted and sentenced to 3 months imprisonment for oil theft in Port Harcourt by a federal high court sitting in Port Harcourt.

Tijani’s conviction by Justice H.J.O. Oshomah of the Federal High Court, Port Harcourt, followed his prosecution by the state Zonal Office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on a one-count charge of dealing in petroleum products without an appropriate licence, to which he pleaded guilty.

The count reads: “That you, Mustapha Tijani, being the driver on board Mack Tanker with Registration Number, ABUJA: ABC 260 ZU, on or about the 15th day of January 2020 at LNG, Eastern Bypass, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, within the jurisdiction of honourable court loaded illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil without authority and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 4(1) of the Petroleum Act, CAP P10 of the Revised Edition (Laws of Federation Nigeria) 2007 and punishable under Section 4(6) of the same Act.”

An EFCC statement on Tuesday said after a careful review of the case, Justice Oshoma convicted and sentenced the defendant to three months in prison, effective from July 6, 2020 date of arrest and remand in the custody of the prosecution.

It said: “Aside from the prison term, the judge ordered the forfeiture of the truck and its content to the federal government.

“The convict was arrested by officers of 6 Division, Nigerian Army on anti-bunkering operations on January 15, 2020, at LNG Eastern by-pass, Port Harcourt, alongside the Mack truck, laden with illegally sourced diesel, (Automotive Gas Oil, AGO) and handed them over to the commission for further investigation and prosecution.”