The Abakaliki Division of the Ebonyi State Magistrate Court on Thursday sentenced one Nwonu Emmanuel to prison for stealing Church offering.
The suspect, it was gathered broken into a Catholic Church in the city and made away with offering money.
He then proceeded to rob a woman of her phone and some amount of cash.
However, the Police arrested him on Monday and the sum of N41, 465.00, was found on him.
The suspect, Mr. Emmanuel, confessed to the police that he broke into the St. Patrick Catholic Church in the Capital City, broke the offering box and took the money (N41, 465.00.).
He was arraigned before the Magistrate’s court on two counts of burglary and stealing, on Thursday.
The charge read, “That you Nwonu Emmanuel ‘m’ on the 11th day of July, 2020, at St. Patrick Catholic Church Kpirikpiri, Abakaliki in the Abakaliki Magisterial District did enter a building used for religious worship and stole the sum of Forty-One Thousand Four Hundred and Sixty-Five Naira (N45, 465.00), belonging to St. Patrick Catholic Church and thereby committed an offence punishable under section 415 of the Criminal Code Cap. 33, Vol. 1, Laws of Ebonyi State of Nigeria, 2009.
“That you Nwonu Emmanuel ‘m’ on the same date and place in the same aforesaid Magisterial District did willfully and unlawfully damaged one offering box and it’s padlock valued Fifteen Thousand Naira (N15,000.00) property of St. Patrick Catholic Church Kpirikpiri, Abakaliki and thereby committed an offence punishable under section 451 of Criminal Code Cap. 33, Vol. 1, Laws of Ebonyi State of Nigeria, 2009.”
The suspect confessed to the crime.
He blamed his action of his poor condition saying life had been hard on him since he lost his job, as a driver.
“I am really suffering and taking care of myself and my blind father has not been that easy for me. Currently, I have no place of my own to stay. I sleep under Spera-In-Deo flyover every night. I was a driver and I lost my job and since then, I have not found any other job to do,” the suspect said.
The Police Prosecutor, Sergeant Alumona Sabastine, tendered the stolen cash, the damaged padlock and a phone, as evidence against the suspect, before the court.
The court, presided over by Chief A.C. Nwusulor, said the offenses would have earned the suspect seven years imprisonment
He however sentenced the accused to 12 months imprisonment without an option of fine.
The Magistrate said the court decided to limit it to 12 months, so that the accused could have a rethink and turn a new life.