Adibe Emenyonu in Benin City
An Evbuoriaria Magistrate Court in Benin-City yesterday remanded an ex-militant, General Pere Ejune, 45, and one Trim Ade, 32, to prison custody for allegedly being in possession of a double-barrel gun, a cut-to-size double-barrel gun and 18 live cartridges.
The two were arraigned in the case filed by the Edo State Police Command.
They and others at large were said to have committed the crime on September 8, 2016, at about 2a.m. at Upper Sakponba Road, Benin City.
Ejune and Ade who are brothers were remanded remanded to Oko Prison, Benin and the case adjourned to October 20, 2.16 by Magistrate C.E. Oghuma for further hearing.
Thereafter, she ordered that the original case file be duplicated and sent to the office of the Department of Public Prosecutions (DPP) for advisement.
Reacting, counsel to the accused, Olayiwola Afolabi, argued that his client, Ejune, was being prosecuted for political reasons following his defection from the All Progressives Congress (APC) to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
He said: “They were charged to court for unlawful possession of firearms under the Robbery and Firearms (Special Provisions.)
“You can only charge a person caught for unlawful possession of firearms when a case of robbery has been established. In this case, there was no case of robbery.
“My client, General Pere, was not even found with any weapon. We are shocked he was charged to court for possession of firearms. He said he left the APC and he is now in the PDP.
“We are happy that the magistrate has said that the case file be duplicated to the DPP. It happened before in Ovia 13. They hauled them to prison. I think the charge was prepared so that they can haul them to prison before election. We however, know what to do”