The Port Harcourt Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Thursday November 2, 2023, arraigned Morris Gbiki Karinane before Justice P .I. Ajoku of the Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
The defendant was arraigned on one -count charge bordering on alleged illegal dealing in petroleum product without a requisite license.
The charge reads: “That you, Morris Gbiki Karinane on the 15th day of July, 2023, at Krakrama Waterways in Rivers State, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, without lawful authority to deal in Petroleum Product, dealt in unspecified quantity of Automotive Gasoline Oil (AGO laden in a Wooden Boat and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1(17)(a) of the Miscellaneous Offences Act, Cap. M17, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 and Punishable Section 1(17)(b) of the same Act”.
The defendants pleaded “not guilty” to the charge when it was read to him.
In view of the plea, prosecution counsel, Dr. B. Ubi prayed the court for a trial date.
However, counsel to the defendant, M .D. Atimi informed the court of his application for bail of the defendant, urging the court to grant his client bail on the most liberal terms.
Justice Ajoku ordered that the defendant be remanded at the Port Harcourt Correctional Service pending the hearing of bail applications.
The matter was adjourned to November 6, 2023 for hearing of bail application.
Karinane’s case started when he was intercepted and arrested by the officers of Nigerian Navy, NNS Pathfinder, Rumolumeni, Port Harcourt, Rivers State in July 2023 for alleged illegal dealing in petroleum products without license at Krakrama Waterways in Rivers State. He was apprehended onboard a wooden boat containing an unspecified quantity of illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil, AGO.