A Benin High Court in Edo State has sentenced a 47-year-old human trafficker, Richard Ehigie, to seven years imprisonment.
The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons had arraigned the convict, who resides at no 71, Osakue St., off Nomayo Road, Benin City, on four counts.
The charge bordered on recruitment of a person by means of abuse, position of vulnerability, assistance to a person engaged in an act of trafficking in persons, and facilitation and exportation of persons for prostitution.
The prosecution said the charge contravened provisions of the Trafficking in Persons (Prohibition) Enforcement and Administration Act, 2015.
Justice Alero Edodo-Erauga found him guilty as charged and sentenced him to seven years’ imprisonment.
Edodo-Erauga ruled that the sentence would run concurrently.
NAPTIP’s Zonal Commander in Benin, Mr. Nduka Nwanwenne, hailed the judgment and vowed that the agency would continue to watch out for offenders like the convict.
Nwanwenne said that NAPTIP, in collaboration with the Joint Border Task Force, a multi-disciplinary crime fighting task force, had investigated the matter when it got wind of the case, arrested and arraigned the convict in court.
“The oath enjoined her to pay her madam the sum of $55,000 (About N19.2m) for a period of between six months and one year.
“Upon which necessary documents and visas were procured for the victim as well as air ticket for the journey.
“She was not to run away or report her madam in Russia to the Police and failure to pay the agreed sum, as part of the oath taking, will make her go mad,’’ he said.