Mohammed Balogun, a chief magistrate, was on Thursday, April 12, 2018, sentenced to three-year jail imprisonment by an Abuja High Court.
The magistrate was convicted of demanding a bribe of N100, 000 from a litigant for the purpose of giving him favorable judgment.
The convict was arrested after collecting the sum of N50,000 as gratification from the litigant, following a sting operation by ICPC.
The Commission, in the charge sheet, pointed out that the action of the convicted magistrate violated Section 8 (a) (ii) of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000 and was punishable under the same section.
The charge sheet read in part, “That you Mohammed Balogun, sometime in the month of September 2003, at Abuja, in the discharge of your official duties as a Chief Magistrate, did corruptly ask for the sum of N100, 000 as gratification from one Dr. Isidore Nnadi in order to show favour in the judgment of the cases he had before your court and you thereby committed an offence contrary and punishable under Section 8 (a)(ii) of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000.”
Before handing down the sentence, Justice Bello cried out that the action of the convict had brought shame to the judiciary.
He said, “You are a Chief Magistrate with great responsibility to provide justice to others, but you have let yourself and the entire judiciary down. In fact, it was the same week you were meant to be elevated to the position of a judge that you committed the crime thereby stopping your promotion.
“Your plea for leniency would not hold water because you deserve an appropriate sentence to send a message to the general public that the judiciary will not condone corruption even among top judicial officers.”
Balogun was then sentenced to three years imprisonment with an option of fine of N500,000.
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