A State High Court in Lagos has convicted a businessman, Lawrence Maduagwu, of stealing $179,000 and sentenced him to 10 years in prison.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in a statement by its spokesperson, Wilson Uwujaren, on Friday, said it charged Mr Maduagwu on a two-count charge of stealing and obtaining by false pretence.
”He was introduced to the complainant, PMC Industry Limited, a Chinese company, through its Nigerian representative, Ohio Ileogben, as a businessman who deals in calcium chloride chemicals,” the statement said.
“He, however, failed to pay for the 500 metric tonnes of calcium powder valued at the sum of $179,000, after taking delivery of the items and efforts to get him to pay for the goods were unsuccessful.”
The defendant pleaded not guilty to the charge and called two witnesses in his defence during the trial.
The prosecution counsel, S.O. Daji, called five witnesses and tendered several exhibits that were admitted in evidence by the court.
During the sitting on June 19, the parties adopted their final written addresses.
The court convicted the defendant and sentenced him to seven years imprisonment on count one and three years on count two.
The sentences are to run concurrently from the date of his remand (February 28, 2018) by the court. This means he will spend seven years in jail.
The court also ordered that the convict make full restitution of $179,000. He ordered the EFCC to employ all legal means to ensure compliance.