Jewish worshippers arrested in Kanu’s house, charged with terrorism
A Chief Magistrate Court 7 in Umuahia has remanded in prison nine Jewish worshippers arrested on Sunday in the ancestral home of the leader of the indigenous People of Biafra Nnamdi Kanu.
They face charges bordering on terrorism, kidnapping and hostage taking.
According to the prosecuting counsel, the worshippers acted with the intent of frightening ASP Justus Ogar and his team thereby committing an offense punishable under section 12(a) of Abia State prohibition of terrorism, kidnapping, hostage taking, use of offensive weapons or explosive and other threatened behaviours law 2009.
Lead counsel to the accused persons, Joshua Iheohunkara Chinoye, prayed the court to grant his clients bail on the grounds that the offence charged is not a capital offence.
He said the accused persons were arrested at a worship location in company of their wives and children who were present in court, arguing that acts of terrorism, kidnapping and hostage taking cannot be carried out in the presence of accused wives and children.
However, the prosecuting counsel led by O. O Uche opposed the bail application, even as he said the Magistrate Court lack jurisdiction based on the charges of terrorism levelled against the accused persons.
In his ruling, the Chief Magistrate U. O Egwu queried the police for arraigning the accused persons before a Magistrate Court, which lacks the jurisdiction to entertain the matter based on the charges against the accused.
He ordered the accused persons to be remanded in prison, and the case transferred to a higher court.