Justice Tijjani Ringim of a Lagos Federal High Court on Thursday refused to grant bail to an alleged drug baron, Stephen Afam Ikeanyionwu, who was arraigned before him over allegation of attempting to smuggle hard drugs weighing 66.65 kilograms out of Nigeria.
Justice Ringim declined to grant Ikeanyionwu’s bail application, for lacking in merit.
The defendant, who was arrested by the National Drug Laws Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) in a church in Lagos, was allegedly caught trying to traffic several hard drugs including cocaine, heroin and Indian Hemp to the United Kingdom (UK), through his logistics and freight forwarding company, named Farawell Company Limited.
He was arraigned before the court on September 9, by the NDLEA on a six-count charge of conspiracy and unlawful dealing in the said banned drugs.
The offences, according to the prosecutor, Abu Ibrahim, violated sections 14(b) and 21(2)(d) of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency Cap. N30, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 and punishable under the same Act.
The defendant has pleaded not guilty to the charge and he was remanded in the custody of Nigerian Correctional Services (NCOs).
While ruling on his bail application on Thursday, Justice Ringim held that, “the mere denial of the claim of the ‘flight risk’, by the applicant/respondent was not enough to controvert the claim.
Justice Ringim, who is a vacation judge, also ordered that the case file should be returned to the court’s administrative Judge, for reassignment.