The police on Friday arraigned a 29-year-old married woman, Ngozi Ugwu, in an FCT Chief Magistrates’ Court in Karu on a three-count charge of adultery and forgery.
Ugwu, a mother of four, is accused of re-marrying another man while still legally married to her first husband.
The prosecutor, Cpl. Shem Simon, told the court that the case was reported by one Innocent Chinedu said to be the accused person’s first husband.
Simon alleged that Chinedu legally married Ngozi before he travelled to Portugal in search of greener pastures, and that the union was blessed with two children, Chimanya and Chisom.
“Even when Chinedu was there, he never stopped calling to ask of their well-being and regularly sent money for their upkeep.
“But the accused decided to get married to one Chinedu Ugwu of Enugu and abandoned the house her former husband rented for them in Lafia after waiting for just three years.
“The accused person also forged the birth certificate of Chinedu’s two children and changed their surname to her father’s name. “The complainant, on his return to the country last year, spent a whole year to locate the accused person, who had married Ugwu and by whom she already has two children.
“The accused person refused to release the complainant’s children to him, claiming that they were not married before they were born. “The complainant decided to report the matter for the court to assist him in getting his children back since the accused is happily married to another man now,” the prosecutor said.
But the accused pleaded not guilty, saying the complainant abandoned her and the children and travelled to Portugal since 2005 without communication or money for their upkeep.
She said he showed up after eight years to claim paternity of the children he abandoned for so long.
“He can’t say the children are his, after all there was no legal marriage between us before they were born,’’ she said.
In her ruling, Chief Magistrate Hadiza Shagari admitted the accused to bail in the sum of N100, 000 with a surety in like sum.
She stated that the surety must be resident within the jurisdiction of the court, with his or her address verified by the prosecutor.