Federal High Court for Port Harcourt don sentence two Lebanese citizens to two years in prison for attempting to smuggle money out of di country.
Nigeria anti graft agency, di Economic and Financial Crimes Commission EFCC, tell di Court say di Nigeria Customs Service naim arrest Chamseddine Waell Mohammed and Dina Jihad Khali wen dem try to smuggle di sum of $890,000 out of di kontri through di Port Harcourt International Airport, Omagwa, and di amount bin dey inside dia luggage onboard a chartered flight wit registration number 9HVFF to Lebanon.
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Dis dey against Section 2(3) of di Money Laundery (Prohibition) Act of 2011 (as amended) and punishable under Section 2(5) of di same Act.
Khalid, according to EFCC bin hold $670,000 while Mohammed carry di sum of $220,000 wen dem arrest dem so come ask di court to sentence dem as charged.
But lawyer to di defendants, Paul Ejiga beg di court to temper justice wit mercy as di defendants na first time offenders and dem no get any previous criminal record.
Di Presiding Judge, Justice I.M. Sani come sentence di two men to two years in prison with an option of fine of one million each after di two defendants plead guilty to di charge.
Im also give order for dem to forfeit di undeclared amount to di Federal Government of Nigeria.
Di highest amount wey pesin fit carry comot travel abroad from Nigeria under Customs law na $10,000.
Na wetin Area Controller of di Command, Auwal Mohammed as im bin dey hand over di suspects to Economic and Financial Crimes Commission EFCC Port Harcourt zone for further investigation and prosecution.
How dem catch dem
Auwal Mohammed say Khalil bin carry $670,000 while Mohammed bin carry $220,000 wen dem arrest dem.
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“Afta we screen dia hand luggage for di Port Harcourt International Airport, we discover say di two suspects cari $890,000 so we arrest dem, bring dem come di Command Headquarters. We take dia statements and count di money physically for dia presence to confam di amount.
We arrest dem because dem attempt to smuggle di money out of di kontri without making proper declaration to officials of Nigerian Customs Service”.
Di customs oga say afta di investigation di cash fit dey forfeited to di federal goment according to di law.
Principal Detective of EFCC Port Harcourt, Macaulay Olayimka as im receive di suspects bin say di Commission go thoroughly investigate di matter and if di suspects really get hand, dem go prosecute dem accordingly.