A Federal High Court in Lagos has refused to grant bail to the suspected vandals of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) pipelines in the Arepo area of Ogun State.
The Presiding judge, Justice Mohammed Idris, in his ruling on the bail application of the accused persons, said that the suspects’ argument for bail on grounds of ill health could not succeed as they failed to provide the time and circumstances surrounding the argument.
The six accused persons are Joel Inerepamu (25), Reuben Oluwole (60), a community leader in Arepo, John Isaiah (28), Ineye Okposa (40), Timi Gunugunu (22) and Saheed Mudashiru (25).
The prosecutor had alleged that the accused persons had vandalised the pipeline and scooped large quantities of petroleum products for illegal sale. Apart from vandalising the pipeline, they are also charged with killing three NNPC engineers Corporation on 5 September 2012.
At the last sitting of the court on 4 February, the prosecuting counsel, Friday Ibadin, had urged the court to disregard the accused persons’ application for bail on the grounds that the offence of murder, among others, with which they were charged attracted capital punishment.
Justice Idris has however ordered an accelerated hearing of the case and fixed trial for the 13th of March. The accused persons will remain in prison custody until the conclusion of their trial.