“No send me to that place; allow me to go to my house” — Man convicted for drug trafficking tells judge

A Federal High Court Lagos on Wednesday convicted and sentenced a 30-year-old man, Omonile Akinbaye, to a term of 12 months in the correctional service for drug trafficking.

After the conviction, Akinbaye incoherently told the court, “No send me to jail, allow me to go to my house.”

“Don’t jail me, let me go home” — Man convicted for drug trafficking begs judge
File photo: court room

The defendant was arraigned before Justice Friday Ogazi on a one-count charge of unlawful dealing in hemp.

Akinbaye who had no legal representation, pleaded guilty to the charge.

Following his plea, the Prosecutor, Mrs Juliana Negedu, called a witness, Mr Benjamin Nketah, an operative of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), to give evidence.

The witness told the court that he works as a central exhibit keeper with the Lagos command of the NDLEA where the defendant was brought before him on Oct. 18, 2023, with the seized narcotics.

He told the court that requisite analysis was conducted on the substance, which tested positive to cannabis sativa also known as hemp, weighing 341g.

The prosecutor also tendered several documents before the court such as a drug analysis form, request for scientific aid form, and a packing of substance form.

Other documents tendered included a bulk of the narcotics, drug analysis report and statement of the defendant.

She urged the court to proceed and convict the defendant based on the evidence adduced.

The court convicted the defendant as charged.

Before the sentence, the court asked the convict if he had any reason why the court should not send him to jail.

In response, the convict who had been making “uncoordinated” statements in court said: “No send me to that place; allow me to go to my house.”

The convict also told the court that he owned a vehicle which he personally drives, but that he also traded on “smoke” as a support.

He said: “I get motor wey be my own, but I dey sell smoke also. If this one no work, then that one go work,” he said

Meanwhile, some lawyers in court raised concerns about the sanity of the convict stressing that he could be paranoid and unaware.

On its part, the court asked the prosecution, whether she thought the convict was a proper case for rehabilitation rather than prosecution.

In response, the prosecutor informed the court that cases were referred for rehabilitation where the volume of narcotics was not above 100g.

She noted that the instant case dealt with 341g of cannabis which was far above the threshold.

In his verdict, the court sentenced the convict to 12 months at the correctional centre with an option of N250,000 fine.

The court warned the convict never to engage in any deal on weed, adding that if he was brought back to the court, he risked a jail term of seven years.

The court ordered that he be transferred to the correctional centre pending his fulfilment of fine option.

The convict, according to the charge, committed the offence on Oct. 13, 2023 at the Isolo area of Lagos.

“He dealt in 341g of cannabis sativa, restricted narcotics similar to cocaine and heroin, without lawful authority.”

The offence, the prosecutor said, contravened the provisions of Section 11(c) of the NDLEA Act Cap N30 Law of the Federation, 2004

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