The Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has adjourned the trial of former Vice Chairman of Lagos Island East Local Government Council,Mr Kehide Ashekun and two others till November 17, 2021.
The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA Ina fresh charge is prosecuting Kehinde Asekun and two others, Azeez Adeniyi Ibrahim, and one Adebiyi Peter Adebayo (now at large) over alleged attempt to export 6.45 kilogrames of Cocaine.
At the commencement of the trial yesterday, Asekun and Azeez Adeniyi Ibrahim were arraigned on a two count charge following which the prosecuting counsel , Mr Abu Ibrahim asked the court for a trial date and the remand of the defendants in the custody of the Nigeria Correctional Service, ( formerly Nigerian Prison Service).
However, Aseku’s counsel , Chief Benson Ndakara made an oral application for Asekun bail which he said should be on the terms and conditions given to the first defendant, Azeez Adeniyi Ibrahim.
But the prosecutor, Mr Abu Ibrahim in his submission, opposed the oral application made by the defendant’s counsel.
Abu said bail motion can only be made on individual basis with separate affidavits.
He added that even if the defendants were jointly arraigned, the court is not bound to grant bail to the defendant simply because same was granted to a co- defendant.
The prosecutor added that the Federal High Court is a court of record adding that the court had earlier upheld his submission and directed the defendant’s counsel to file a bail application in respect of the second defendant (Asekun).
Meanwhile, the court upheld the submission of Chief Ndakara to the effect that the witness already called in respect of the first defendant , Azeez Adeniyi Ibrahim should be recalled in the presence of the other defendant.
The two counts Amended charge reads:
That you Azeez Adeniyi Ibrahim, Asekun Kehinde and one Adebiyi Peter Adebayo (now at large) male, adults on or about the 26th of December, 2020 conspired amongst yourselves to export 6.45 kilograms of Cocaine, a narcotic drug, and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 14 (b) of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency Cap. N30, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.
Count 2 reads: That you Azeez Adeniyi Ibrahim, Male, Adult on or about the 26th of December, 2020 at Gate-C entrance the Departure Hall of the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Ikeja-Lagos without lawful authority exported 6.45 kilograms of Cocaine, a narcotic drug, and you thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 11 (b) of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency Cap N30, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.
It would be recalled that Kehide Asekun had earlier in June this year been arraigned on another one count charge bothering on drug trafficking at the Federal High Court , Lagos
The former Vice-Chairman of the Lagos Island East Local Government in the former charge, was alleged to have attempted to export 1.0 kg of cocaine.
The former charge read: “That you Asekun Sakiru Kehinde, Male,Adult, on or about the 7th May, 2021 during the outward clearance of passengers on Virgin Atlantic Airlines flight from Lagos to London-Heathrow, at the Departure Hall of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja- Lagos without lawful authority exported 1.0 Kilogramme of Cocaine, a narcotic drug and you thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under section 12(b) of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency Act. Cap. N30 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria,2004.
He however, pleaded not guilty to the charge and had remain in prison custody ever since, conquent upon the refusal of his bail application by the court.