By Innocent Anaba
A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos, yesterday, dismissed a four-count forgery charge filed by the Police against three traders, for lack of diligent prosecution.
The three traders are lkeaka Clement Chukwuebuka, 34; James Obiechina Chekwube, 39, and Oraeke Benjamin Onyeka, 32 .
The three men were arraigned before Justice Mohammed Idris by the policemen from State Criminal Intelligence and Investigation Department, SCIID, Panti-Yaba, Lagos, on a four-count charge bordering on conspiracy and forgery.
Police in the charge alleged that the three traders had sometime between 2015 and 2016, at Agric Market, Orile Coker, Lagos, conspired among themselves and forged a trademark.
The offences, according to the prosecutor, Mr. Anyigor Innocent, are contrary to Section 10, 3(b), and punishable under Section 3(3)(a) of the Merchandise Marks Act. Cap. M10, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.
After their arraignment, the prosecution had failed to open his case on three occasions.
At the resumed trial of the three men yesterday, their lawyers, Aso Kalu Etea and Ive Asemudare, urged the court to dismiss the charges against their clients, due to non-diligent prosecution.
Etea and Asemudare told the court that on three occasions that the matter had been slated for trial, the prosecutor failed to show up before the court.
They said: “The conduct of the prosecution is an issue here as this is the third time the matter is slated for trial and the prosecution is not ready.
“It is against the law of speedy trial. In the circumstance, we hereby urged the court to dismiss the charge against all the defendants.”
After the submissions of the defendants’ lawyers, Justice Idris ruled “charges against all the defendants are hereby dismissed.”