Army Court Jails Maj Gen Umaru Mohammed 7yrs for Stealing, Ordered to Return N3billion
The Nigerian Army Special Court Martial sitting in Abuja has sentenced Major General Umaru Mohammed, a former group managing director of the Nigerian Army Properties Limited (NAPL) to seven years imprisonment for stealing.
The court convicted the General on 14 out of the 18 count charges brought against him, including unlawfully converting $2.17 and N1.06 billion belonging to the NAPL.
The president of the court, Maj.-Gen. James Myam while delivering judgement on Tuesday, said the sentence was based on the provisions of the Criminal Code Act Cap C38 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 and section 174 of the Armed Forces Act Cap 20 Laws, 2004.
The court’s president further held that the verdict was made after due consideration of the plea of mitigation by the defence counsel.
He said, “These sentences of this special court martial are all to run concurrently and are subject to the confirmation of the confirming authority.
“This sentence is dated this day, the 10th of October 2023 and the court is hereby adjourned Sine die.”
Reading out the various convictions, the court’s president said that on count one, which borders on stealing, Mr Mohammed was found guilty and will spend five years in prison and refund $1.04 million back to NAPL.
Part of the sentencing reads:
“General Umar Mohammed was guilty of 14-count charges out of 18 counts and the findings are as follows: Count 1: Stealing: 5 years imprisonment, and he must return a total sum of $1,045,400.000 dollars to NAPL account.
“Count 2: Stealing: He was found guilty. Punishment: 5 years imprisonment. He must return $480,000 dollars to NAPL. Count 3: Stealing: 5 years imprisonment and he is to return $85,400 dollars to NAPL.
“Count 4: Stealing: 5 years imprisonment and he is to return the sum of $35,300 only to NAPL. Count 5: Stealing: 5 years imprisonment and to return the sum of N55,500 dollars to NAPL.
“Count 6: Stealing and is sentenced to 5 years imprisonment. This is in line with 174 of the Armed Forces Act Cap 8 120 and he shall pay $46,500 only to NAPL. Count 7: Criminal conspiracy to commit forgery (Not Guilty) Discharged and acquitted. Court 8: Forgery (Guilty) sentenced to 7 years imprisonment.
Reacting to the sentences, the defence counsel, Olalekan Ojo (SAN), citing section 157 of the Armed Forces Act, prayed the court to move his client to a federal correctional facility, Kuje Abuja instead of the military detention facility; the court, however, rejected the request.
Speaking to journalists, the defence counsel said that he would consult with his client to determine if he will be appealing the verdict of the special court.
According to him, “If he tells us tomorrow or after the confirmation that he is not satisfied with the findings and sentence, then we must carry out his instruction to appeal if he so instructs us, the decision is his.”