No fewer than seven oil thieves have been convicted and sentenced to 84 years imprisonment by a Federal High Court siting in Lagos State on Friday, October 30, 2015.
The convicted men were accused of dealing in 1,459 metric tonnes of Premium Motor Spirit, popularly known as petrol without obtaining lawful authority.
In his ruling, Justice Okon Abang, stated that each of the convicts will serve a jail term of 12 years.
Among the sentenced men were: Adedamola Ogungbayi, Olaniran Olabode, Suraju Gasali and Moses Emmanuel, Wilson Bonsi, Okaraodi Uche and Onyeogo Happy.
Justice Abang also ordered the forfeiture of the vessel, MT Good Success, used by the convicts in perpetrating the crime, as well as the recovered petroleum product to the Federal Government, according to Daily Post.
Abang further ordered the forfeiture of the sums of N66.6m and $975,000 belonging to the convicts’ company, Hepa Global Energy Limited, domiciled with the First City Monument Bank.
The seven convicts, their vessel and company had on August 28, 2014 been re-arraigned on five counts before Abang, alongside one Padoun Jacob, who was on Fridaydischarged and acquitted by the court.
Abang said: “The guilty should not escape punishment but the innocent should not be punished.
“The convicts have no sympathy for the corporate existence of this country. The seed of wrongdoing may be sown in secret but the harvest cannot be concealed. Today is the day of reckoning.
“You call it oil bunkering or pipeline vandalism, this menace has reached an alarming proportion in this country; enough is enough.
“The convicts are godless and lawless, without any particle of sympathy for this country. They are part of the people that have contributed to the economic woes of this country.
“The convicts planted thorns, they cannot expect to gather flowers; they sowed the wind, and they must gather whirlwind.”