Lagos-The absence of a counsel on Wednesday in Lagos stalled the trial of two hotel security guards — Benjamine Dauda and Wilfred Ejue — charged with theft of 3, 220 litres of diesel worth N500, 000.
The duo of Dauda, 39, and Ejue, 34, is standing trial at an Igbosere Magistrates’ Court on a two-count charge of conspiracy and stealing.
At the resumed hearing of the case on Wednesday, the accused told the court that they needed more time to employ a lawyer that would represent them.
In her ruling, the Magistrate, Mrs O. A. Ogunbowale, adjourned the case to Aug. 18 for commencement of trial.
She said the trial would commence whether or not the two men were represented by a counsel.
Ealier, the prosecutor, ASP Adegoke Akinlabi, told the court that the accused committed the offences on May 8 at Marcopolo Hotel and Suites at No. 4, Ayeni Crescent, Chevy View Estate, Lekki, Lagos.
He said the accused conspired and stole 3, 220 litres of diesel belonging to their employer — Marcopolo Hotel and Suites.
The offences, according to the prosecutor, contravene Sections 285 (7) and 410 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2011.
Both pleaded not guilty.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Section 285 (7) provides seven years imprisonment for stealing employer’s property, while Section 410 prescribes a two-year jail term for conspiracy.
Magistrate O. A. Olagbende, who was handling the case before she was transferred, had granted the accused bail in the sum of N50, 000 each with one surety each in like sum.
The accused were first arraigned on May 21 and the case has suffered three adjournments due to the absence of a defence counsel. (NAN)