Drama in court as fake FRSC official begs to change plea

By The Citizen

A mild drama ensued on Friday at an Abuja Senior Magistrates' Court when a fake FRSC official, Father Jacob, went down on his knees in tears and begged to change his plea.

Jacob, 28, who was arraigned before Senior Magistrate Aminu Abdullahi for impersonating an FRSC officer and defrauding two persons of N26,000, had earlier pleaded not guilty but prayed the court to allow him change his plea to guilty.

'My Lord, I am sorry for interrupting the court. I have been in prison custody in the last four months.

'I was arraigned on Sept. 27, 2013 in an Upper Area Court on the same offence. I was convicted and sentenced to four months in prison without an option of fine.

'I was immediately re-arrested by the police after the sentence was passed and charged to this court on the same offence without any explanation.

'I was granted bail here but could not meet the bail conditions because I was still serving a prison term when this case came up.

'I am guilty your Lordship. I introduced myself to Mr Caleb Hamid and Miss Mercy Obidah as an FRSC official, and also collected the money to secure employment for them.

'I want the court to tamper justice with mercy instead of wasting time of going into trial. It was condition that pushed me to commit the crime,' he begged.

The drama began when a prosecuting witness entered the dock to testify against the accused.

Jacob immediately fell and rolled on the floor and pleaded with the court to allow him change his plea.

A defense counsel, Mrs Iquo Uwah, from the Legal Aids Council, pleaded with the court to consider the time the accused had spent in prison custody when passing its judgment.

Delivering judgment, Abdullahi sentenced the accused to four months in prison without an option of fine.

He held that the sentence would begin from the date the accused was first convicted, and would therefore has three days to spend in prison.

The Prosecutor, Cpl. Silas Nanpam, had told the court that the convict impersonated as an FRSC officer and defrauded Hamid and Obidah of N26,000 on the pretext that he would secure jobs for them in the FRSC. NAN