The judge ruled that Mr. Akanbi’s excuse and plea were not sufficient reasons not to be punished.
A 27-year-old man, Lekan Azeez, of Gishiri village, Abuja, has been sentenced to six months in prison for stealing N1,200 from one Alhaji Bala.
Mr. Azeez was sentenced on Friday by An Abuja Senior Magistrates’ Court presided over by Ann Akobi.
The judge, however, gave the convict an option of N2 thousand fine.
Mr. Akobi said that the offence, commonly known as “pick pocket’’ was becoming a common practice in the Abuja and the best way to curb it was punishment.
She said that the sentence would serve as deterrent to other offenders of like minds.
Earlier, the prosecutor, Monday Akor, had told the court that the case was reported at the Maitama Police Station by one Inspector Ayuba attached to the Police Force Headquarters, Abuja.
Mr. Akor said that Mr. Azeez stole N1, 200 from Alhaji Bala at the International Conference Centre, Abuja.
He said that the money was recovered from Mr. Azeez during investigation, an offence which contravened the provisions of Section 287 of the Penal Code.
Mr. Azeez pleaded guilty to the charge and begged for mercy.
“I was hungry. I did not know what came over me on that day that made me to steal. I have never stole before and pray the court to forgive me,” he said.
The magistrate said that the accused had not been able to give tangible reasons to the court on why he should not be punished for the offence.
Ms. Akobi also ordered that the money recovered be returned to Bala.