By Martin Iyonguvihi
A 21-year-old man, Greatness Auta of Akwanga in Nasarawa State was on Tuesday, arraigned and convicted by a Makurdi Magistrate Court for breaking into a Catholic Church, St Peter’s Low Level, Makurdi Sacristy and stole the sum of N8,000 from the serving box.
The convict who was arraigned by the Benue State Police Command for house trespass, mischief and theft contrary to Section 350, 329 and 288 of the Penal Code Law of Benue State pleaded guilty to the charges.
According to the Prosecutor, Sgt Kuegh Abough, the convict was reported by one Moses Akaaimom to had mischievously broken inside the Sacristy of St Peters Catholic Church, Low Level, Makurdi, through the window and stole the sum of N8,000 in a serving box, belonging to ‘Saint Vincent the Paul’, a society for the poor.
The prosecutor said during Police investigation, the said Auta was arrested in connection with the crime and the sum of N8,000 was recovered from him.
According to the convict, while pleading for mercy, “it wasn’t deliberate. I was desperate to go home, the court should have mercy. I want to go back to my grandmother. I taught since the reverend father refused to give me money, it was God that showed me that money to carry.”
Delivering the judgement, the Magistrate, Kadoon Gbasha Esq, submitted that since there was no record of previous convictions and that the accused had pleaded guilty, the defendant is convicted for the offence of House Trespass, Mischief and Theft under Sections 350, 329 and 288 of Penal Code Law of Benue State 2004 cap 124.
She subsequently said, “the convict is hereby sentenced to one month imprisonment for each of the offences with an option of fine of N1000 in lieu of imprisonment.
“Sentence is to run concurrently and it is passed under Section 68 of the Penal Code Law of Benue State cap 124. Right of appeal is explained,” she ruled.