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COVID-19: 123 persons arraigned for violating lockdown rules in Rivers

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……Many convicted get 10,000 bail each

Lockdown

By Davies Iheamnachor, Port-Harcourt

No fewer than 123 persons have been arrested and arraigned before three Magistrate Courts sitting in Port Harcourt for violation of the 24 hours lockdown orders By Governor Nyesom Wike on some parts of Rivers state.

Although, unconfirmed reports say over 200 people have been arrested by security operatives in the Rivers since the governor of the state announced the restrictions, Monday.

But, the charge sheet confirms that 123 people were to make appearance before the courts and their trail was placed in batches.

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In the wake of the 24 hours curfew parts of Akpor in Ohio/Akpor Local Government Area and parts of Ikwerre road in Port Harcourt City LGA, security agencies who were commissioned to enforce the law had begun arrest of offenders from Tuesday.

So far over 123 persons who were nabbed for flouting the curfew and trading orders in parts of Rivers state were brought before three different magistrate courts in the state for prosecution.

The suspects who were arrested by police in different parts of the area since were arraigned on three counts of conspiracy, disobedient to Governors’ directive and trading at a restricted area which is said to have causes breach of public peace.

Three magistrates who presided over the cases included, Rita Oguguo, D.D. Ihua-Maduenyi and V.E. Nweke in their various courtrooms granted bail to all the suspects who appeared before them, Thursday.

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However, those who pleaded guilty were granted N10,000 bail while those who pleaded not guilty to the charges were granted N100,000 bail with two surety whose addresses must be verified by the prosecutors.

The Magistrates subsequently adjourned till the 6th of April for definite hearing on the case of those who pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Meanwhile, one of the defense counsels Izitoh Orokwo said despite the suffering of the suspects, the court should be commended in the manner they handled the cases.

Vanguard

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