16-Month Jail Term for Mother-of- Seven – Independent Observers

16-Month Jail Term for Mother-of- Seven

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A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, on Friday sentenced one Rose Phillips, a 51-year-old mother-of-seven, to 16-month imprisonment for unlawful dealing in narcotics.

Justice Nkeonye Maha convicted Phillips on one count of possession of 44kg of Indian hemp filed against her by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).

“I find the defendant guilty as charged and accordingly convict her,” Maha said.

In convicting Phillips, the judge said that she took into consideration the gravity of the offence, the quantity involved, the age of the convict and the fact that she lost her husband while in detention.

Mr. Femi Aigbe, counsel to Phillips, had earlier pleaded with the court to temper justice with mercy since the convict was a first time offender and did not waste the time of the court as she pleaded guilty. He said Phillips was a tomato seller, prior to dealing in cannabis, and has seven children aged between seven and 25 years.

Mr. Mike Kasa, the prosecutor, had told the court that Phillips was arrested in 2018 by officers of the NDLEA, along Gwagwalada-Abaji highway in the FCT.

He also told the court that she concealed the substance in bags covered with fresh leaves.

The sentence is expected to commence from when she was arrested in October 2018.

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