The Benue Police Command on Monday arraigned one Jerry Tersoo in a Makurdi Magistrates’ Court for allegedly belonging to a cult group and being in possession of illicit drugs.
Tersoo is standing trial on a two-count charge of belonging to an unlawful society and being in possession of illicit drugs.
The prosecutor, Insp. Michael Iorundu, told the court that on June 27, Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), operatives led by Insp. Aliyu Sambo, arrested the defendant and brought him to SARS office.
He said the operatives reported that they were on patrol within Makurdi town when they received a distress call from an anonymous caller about a clash among rival cult groups at IBB Square, Makurdi.
“The anonymous caller told the SARS operatives that the cult groups were terrorising innocent members of the public as a result of the clash.
“The operatives stated that following the call, they swiftly moved to the scene but on sighting them, the cultists took to their heels.
“They pursued the cultists but could only arrest the defendant and when searched, they recovered four packs of illicit drugs, called tramadol and bottle containing liquid substance, suspected to be codeine,’’ he said.
The prosecutor said that during police investigation, it was discovered that the defendant is a member of black axe cult group that has terrorised Makurdi town and its environs.
According to the prosecutor, his offence contravened Section 11(2) of the Abduction, Hostage taking, Kidnapping, Secret Cult and Similar Activities (Prohibition) Law of Benue State, 2017 and Section 15(A) (iv) of Miscellaneous Offences Act, 2004.
However, when the case came up, the defendant did not take plea for lack of jurisdiction of the court to entertain the matter.
The prosecutor asked the court for an adjournment to enable police continue with investigation to apprehend the fleeing suspects.
The Magistrate, Mrs Felicia Ikyegh, ordered that the accused person be remanded in prison and adjourned the matter until Sept. 7, for further mention. (NAN)