BY OLUGBENGA SOYELE, Lagos
A Federal High Court in Lagos has remanded a businessman, Chidi Nwanyanwu, in police custody for allegedly adulterating engine oil and inscribing forged Standard Organisation of Nigeria (SON) logos on the product.
The trial judge, Justice Maureen Onyetenu ordered that Nwanyanwu be kept in jail after he was arraigned before her alongside his two firms, Two Ocean Oil Ltd and Hi-Power Lubricants.
The defendant and his companies are facing a four-counts charge of dealing in adulterated engine oil, non-compliance with SON’s Conformity Assessment Programme and forging of the SON’s logo, mark of quality and certification number.
According to SON’s counsel, Joseph Olofindare, the defendants, of No. 21, Kenneth Obas Place Estate, Ojo, Lagos committed the offence, on or about February 1, 2021, at the Trade Fair Administrative Block Complex, Badagry Expressway, Lagos.
The offences, according to Olofindare, are punishable under sections Section 26, 26(a)&(b) of the SON Act, 2015, and section 1(18a)(ii) of the Miscellaneous Offences Act, 2004.
The defendants, however, pleaded not guilty.
Their counsel, Uchenna Umoneke, informed the court that his client’s bail motion had been filed and served on the prosecution.
Olofindare did not oppose the application. But he alleged that Nwanyanwu had been evasive since 2016 and had dishonoured all of the SON’s invitations for a meeting on how to find a remedy for the problems created by his products.
Following the allegation, Umoneke prayed for a short date to enable him to file a further and better affidavit for Nwanyanwu’s bail.
Granting his prayer, Justice Onyetenu adjourned till March 10, 2021, for hearing of the defendant’s bail application.
The judge remanded Nwanyanwu at the Force Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department (CIID), Ikoyi, Lagos.