Monday 25th September, 2017
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Court remand three in Prison over murder of UNIPORT Lecturer

Court remand three in Prison over murder of UNIPORT Lecturer

A Magistrate court sitting in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital, has remand three persons in the prison custody over alleged kidnap and murder of a male lecturer with the University of Port Harcourt(UNIPORT),Dr. Eeba Lebari.

The accused persons are, Christopher Kinanee, deceased gateman,  Lebari Robert Tambari, an Ex-Police officer who was the victims cousine, and Ibrahim Useni, a foreigner, from the Republic of Benin, who was the deceased housemaid who also handles his building constructions.

The suspects were arrested between December 2015 and early this month. The Inspector General of police (IGP), Ibrahim Idris, through his Special Monitoring Unit in the state, led by Ben Igwe, a Deputy Commissioner of Police investigated the killing, the IGP is also the prosecutor.

Two other Benin Republic national allegedly involved in the crime are presently at large. They have reportedly returned to their country, shortly after the murder.

The IGP charged the suspects for conspiracy, kidnapping and murder.

The Police Lawyer who is prosecuting the charge for the IGP, Mr. Okon Monday Umana told the court that the suspects committed offence punishable in sections, 324,319(1), 516(1),of the criminal code Cap 37 volume 2, laws of Rivers State of Nigeria, 1999, as well as sections, 1(1)(2)(a),of Rivers state kidnap(prohibitions), amendment law number 5 of 2015.

The accused were not allowed to take plea in the charge read before , as not presiding Chief Magistrate, Sokari Andrew-Jaja, said the court lacks jurisdiction to entertain the charge, being a capital offence punishable with maximum sentence, when found guilty.

He ordered that the original case file be remitted to the  office of the State Director of Public Prosecution(DPP), for legal advice.

He adjourned the case till September 28, for report of DPP advice.      

DR. Lebari of the Department of Management, Faculty of Management Sciences, UNIPORT was reportedly kidnapped from his Mercyland Estate residence, along East West road, in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area (LGA), of the state in October, 17, 2015.

His purported kidnappers allegedly called his(deceased),younger brother, overseas to ask for N1.5 million ransom before he could be released.

The decayed body of the victim was later recovered from a shallow grave in his residence. The first accused (gateman),who allegedly sold out the victim's galaxy phone pointed to the police where the deceased was buried.

Investigations has been on going to unravel the mystery behind his purported kidnap and later discovered dead body found which led to the arrested and first arraignment of the accused in court yesterday.