Rivers State High Court in Port Harcourt has adjourned till June 17 for the arraignment of four persons in alleged connection with the robbery and murder of one Chidi Onwukwe, in Elelenwo area of the city.
The four, according to the charge marked PHC/667/CR/2022 filed by the Police, are Samuel Onwukwe, 49, (1st defendant) Andrew Epai Otanye, 27, (2nd defendant), Samuel Emmason, 26, (3rd defendant) and Promise George, 30, (4th defendant).
Justice Sylvester Popnen fixed the date following the suspects’ absence.
When the matter was called, police counsel Essien Edet informed the court that only Samuel was in custody but that the Investigative Police Officer in the case, who should have brought him to court, was away on special duty
He added that others had yet to be served the charge and were not in court to take their pleas.
“The 1st defendant is in police custody but the IPO is in Bayelsa on a special assignment. We are asking for adjournment to enable the defendants to appear to take plea,” Mr. Edet added.
While the 1st to 3rd defendants had no legal representation, the 4th defendant was represented by J. Okpamen.
Justice Popnen directed the prosecutor to ensure the defendants were served to enable them appear in court to take their pleas.
The judge adjourned proceedings till June 17.
The charge reads in part: “That you Samuel Onwukwe ‘M’, Andrew Epai Otanye ‘M’, Samuel Emmason ‘M’ and Promise George ‘F’, with others at large on or about the 27th January, 2021 at Victory Estate Old Refinery Road, Elelenwo, Port Harcourt, while armed with guns and other dangerous weapons did rob one Mr. Chidi Onwukwe John of the following properties, one Samsung Galaxy and Samsung Galaxy S6 and one Toyota 4 Runner Jeep with Reg. No. LSD 335 FE, and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 1(2) (a) of the Robbery and Firearms (Special Provisions) Act Cap R11 Laws of the Federation 2022.
“That you Samuel Onwukwe ‘M’, Andrew Epai Otanye ‘M’, Samuel Emmason ‘M’ and Promise George ‘F’, with others at large on or about the 27th January, 2021 at Victory Estate Old Refinery Road, Elelenwo, Port Harcourt within the Jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, did conspire among yourselves to commit felony to wit: murder, and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 324 of the Criminal Code Cap 37 Vol. 2 Laws of Rivers State of Nigeria.”
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