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Businessman denies stealing truck load of petrol worth N15. 75m

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A man, Babangida Mohammed-Ibrahim, accused of stealing a truck-load of petroleum product worth N15. 75 million, on Friday denied the accusations, saying he bought the petrol from the market.

“I bought the petroleum products in the market. I didn’t steal it as alleged,” Mohammed-Ibrahim told a High Court in Jos while testifying before Justice David Mann.

Jenny Investment Nig. Ltd, a Jos-based petroleum business company and Mr Bajamin Ogbo, a Director, on Nov. 12, 2016 filed a case of alleged stealing against Mohammed-Ibrahim and two others, now at large.

They were alleged to have stolen truck loaded with 450, 000 litres of petroleum belonging to the company.

The company claimed that it bought the product from NIPCO in Lagos on Feb. 16, 2016, prepared all the necessary documentation and got a tanker to transport it to Jos at the cost of N575,000 only for the tanker and the driver, one Aliyu Abdullahi, to disappear.

Mohammed-Ibrahim, who denied that the accusation that he stole the truck, said he bought it ever from one Alhaji  Musa Tunga, who is alleged to be at large.

“I bought the product from Alhaji Musa Tunga, a business partner, who lives in Kaduna State.

“I called Alhaji Tunga on Feb. 16, 2016, and asked is he had any truck for sale but he said no.

”The following day he called me to say he had one truck loaded with product, 450, 000 litres of petrol.

”I bought the product at N104. 50 per litre, “ the accused claimed.

When asked during cross-examination by the Plaintiffs’ Counsel, Mr Charles Obishai, SAN, why he  bought the products at an exorbitant price of N104. 50, he said it was because of there was fuel scarcity at the period.

The presiding judge, who said he had an engagement somewhere, adjourned the case to March 3 for continuation of hearing.

NAN reports that Jenny Investment Nig. Ltd; is demanding for the refund of N19. 75 million from the accused persons being the cost of the stolen product,  N5.85 million (including the profit -N15. 75M at N350 per litre)

The plaintiffs are equally asking the court to award to them the payment of the legal fees of N1. 5 million and N1. 3 million for two cases despised off In Zamfara and Sokoto states and another N1. 2 million for the ongoing case in Jos.

The plaintiffs had claimed that on investigating the missing petroleum tanker by Police in Jos, Mohammed-Ibrahim had sued them in a Zamfara High Court for defamation and had appealed against the judgment before a court of Appeal sitting in Sokoto which informed the claim for the fees.

Edited By: Sadiya Hamza

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