Lawyer faces trial over alleged forgery

The police in Edo on Wednesday arraigned a Legal Practitioner, Smart Agbonlalor,65, and Uwangue Osaigbovo,55, in Benin for allegedly forging a land approval document, purported have been issued by the Oba of Benin.

The two defendants were arraigned on a two-count charge bothering on and forgery before an Ogbeson Chief Magistrates’ Court, Benin.

The Police Prosecutor, Sgt. Kehinde Iyawe, said that the defendants on July 19, along Benin/Auchi Road, Aduwawa, within Oregbeni Magisterial District, conspired felony.

Iyawe alleged that the defendants forged the document in their bid take possession of a land measuring 100ft by 200ft with beacon No N35/B, 46/B, 54/B, 55/B in Aduwawa area of Benin City.

Iyawe said the defendants alleged that the document was purportedly issued by the then Oba of Benin, Oba Akenzua ECMG, on April 15, 1966.

He said the defendants knew the document be false because the landed property belonged one Mr Henry Okwarobo, the Majority Leader of the House of Assembly.

The prosecutor said that the contravened Sections 516, and 484 of the Criminal Code, Laws of the defunct Bendel State, 1976, which is now applicable in Edo.

The defendants, however, pleaded not guilty the charges leveled against them.

The defendants’ counsels, Mr S. C. Ugoke and Mr M. I. Ukpebor, appealed the Chief Magistrate grant their clients bail in most liberal terms.

They said their clients not jump bail and always appear in court.

The police prosecutor did not oppose the bail application.

Consequently, Chief Magistrate, Prince Mutairu Oare, admitted the defendants a bail in the sum of N200,000 each, with one surety in the like sum.

He said that the surety must be a responsible person and must depose an affidavit of means.

Oare also directed that the surety must deposit two recent passport photographs of himself and that of the defendants with the court.

He added that information about the surety’s residence should be verified by the court registrar.

The chief magistrate adjourned the case until Aug. 23 for hearing. (NAN)