A National Security and Civil Defense Corps (NSCDC) officer has been ordered to be remanded in Koton Karfe prison by a Kogi State High Court.
The officer, Taiwo Babalola, with Civil Defense number 46548, was arraigned over alleged involvement in a robbery case.
Babalola and two others; Kolawole Samson and Ainoko Paul are currently facing trial on an alleged armed robbery case which took place at Lokongoma Housing Estate, Lokoja, Kogi State.
The victim of the alleged robbery, Mr Kadiri Mukailu told the court that on December 9, 2016, three suspected armed robbers stormed his residence at Lokongoma, Lokoja and forcefully collected the keys to his Toyota car with Chassis No. 4TIBE46K67U145312, registration No. LKJ 303 MA and drove it away.
Mukailu said the car which is yet to be recovered was carted away by the armed robbers along with UBA ATM card, Nokia handset valued at N12,000; Itel phone valued at N4,000; a wrist watch valued at N1,500; clothes valued at N30,000 and his original vehicle license.
Mukailu further told the court that during the robbery incident which lasted for two hours he was able to look at the faces of the armed robbers as there was full electricity in his area that day and the robbers wore no mask.
He added that he cannot forget the identity of one of them; Kolawale Samson who had scattered teeth and wielded a big gun and called himself the “MOPOL”.
Mukailu also told the court that the attention of his family members was drawn when on January 8, 2017, the suspected armed robbers returned to his vicinity. He said he immediately drew the attention of the local vigilantes who condone off the premises before the police were alerted and arrested the suspects along with Babalola, in Babalola’s house.
But Babalola in his own defense at hearing yesterday said he is a neighbour to the claimant at Lokongoma village in Lokoja, but denied being part of the robbery.
He told the court that he was in his house on December 9, 2016 when three men in mufti who claimed to be policemen accosted him and told him they were trailing some criminals whom they claimed entered his neighbors house, “As a security officer I asked if I could follow them but they declined my request. I even reported the incidence to my superiors in the office the following day.”
Babalola said he was however surprised to be arrested in his house at Lokongoma, Lokoja on January 8, 2017 along with the two other suspects and taken to the D Division of the police station Lokoja were he wrote his statement.
In the statement he admitted he saw some people drove off a Toyota car on the day of the robbery, adding that the two other suspects are his brother and friend respectively.
Justice Sunday Otu of High court 3 Lokoja ordered that the three accused be remanded in prison custody and adjourned the case to April 11 for further hearing to enable the prosecutor cross examine the two other suspects.