A Magistrate Court sitting in Benin city, Edo State, has sentenced a tricycle operator, Adeshina Adeyemo, who assaulted personnel of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) and stripped himself naked along Benin to Sapele road in July 2020, to three months imprisonment.
The magistrate was found guilty of attacking patrol operatives and damaging patrol vehicle belonging to the FRSC.
According to the FRSC spokesperson, Bisi Kazeem, Adeshina was arraigned with a case file number MEV/117C/2020 before Snr Magistrate F. Ojehumen of the Evbuoriaria Magistrate Court B on a two-count charge bordering on conducting himself in a manner likely to cause breach of public peace; and for maliciously damaging FRSC patrol vehicle during patrol operations along Sapele-Benin road on 16 July, 2020.
The defendant was found guilty as charged, but in line with the 2019 sentencing guidelines.
On the first charge, Adeshina is to pay the sum of N5000 or serve one month imprisonment, and N41,000 or 2 months imprisonment for the second charge and both sentence are to run concurrently.
The defendant, who failed to meet the option of fine, has been taken into custody at the Nigeria Correctional Service in Benin City.
Kazeem said that the matter which was first presented before the court on 22 July, 2020, when the defendant pleaded not guilty, witnessed over four subsequent appearances before it was finally adjourned on 19 October, 2020, due to the EndSARS protest to January 11, 2021, when the verdict was pronounced.
Explaining why Adeshina was prosecuted, the FRSC spokesperson recalled that the rider who was apprehended for committing the offences of driving against traffic, driving without a valid drivers license and under the influence of alcohol, went berserk at the point of arrest, stripped himself naked, and started throwing obstacles on both personnel and the patrol vehicle and at some point, even dragged the patrol operatives in uniform.
“This act of incivility and disrespect to Public Officers saw him destroy the staff’s uniform and not only damaged the windscreen of the patrol car, but disfigured the bonnet and other body parts with mud and stone before he was finally arrested, detained in Etete Police Station before charging him to Court,” Kazeem said.
Reacting to the judgement, the Corps Marshal, Dr Boboye Oyeyemi, commended the Judiciary for quick dispensation of justice, noting that, this like other judgements, is an indication and strong warning to perpetrator that no member of the public who damages FRSC property, no matter how small will be spared.
While lamenting the attacks on FRSC personnel which often result in loss of lives of patrolmen on the highways, Oyeyemi warned’ the motoring community, particularly the recalcitrants who have made it habitual to attack security agencies to desist from such henceforth, or face the wrath of the law squarely.”