Police arraign 60 Shiite members, five months after arrest

Nigerian Police Force wednesday arraigned 60 members of the proscribed Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) otherwise known as Shiite over alleged disturbance of public peace.

Their arraignment before Mr Suleiman Belgore of the High Court of Federal Capital Territory (FCT) in Apo, Abuja, is coming five months after their arrest in the Abuja metropolis.

They were arraigned on a nine-count charge bordering on homicide and disturbance of public peace and destruction of government properties.

The defendants were among those arrested during the July 22, 2019 protest at Central Business District (CBD) area of the FCT.

The protest led to the death of DCP Usman Umar and a youth corps member, Precious Owolabi, attached to Channels Television

The defendants however pleaded not guilty to all the counts.

The charge with number: CR/31/19 bothered on homicide, disturbances of public peace and destruction of government property.

After their non-guilty plea, the prosecution counsel, Mr Simon Lough urged the court to remand the defendants in Correctional Centre in Kuje, Abuja, having being held in custody of the SARS in the past five months.

He also urged the court to move its sitting to Kuje due to logistics.

Defence counsel, Mr Bala Dakum did not oppose the prosecutor’s request but told the court that he intended to move a bail application.

Belgore ordered the remand of the defendants in SARS custody till December 10, pending the hearing of the bail application and venue of trial.



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