AN Osogbo High Court, on Monday, sentenced a 31-year-old Kelvin Igha Igbodalo to 45 years imprisonment without an option of fine, for stealing a Sony Ericson phone valued at N50,000 belonging to the Osun State governor, Mr Rauf Aregbesola, during his swearing-in ceremony in November 2010.
The accused, who faced a six-count charge and was subsequently sentenced to 10 years each for the first three-count, also bagged a five-year jail term for each of the last three counts.
However, the 45-year jail term for the six counts on the accused would run concurrently, as the convict was said to have earlier served six years imprisonment in Ikoyi prison in connection with a murder case in 2005.
Ighodalo was accused of stealing the governor’s phone on November 27, 2010 at the state Technical College sport grounds, during his swearing-in ceremony.
The convict, who stood trial on six-count charge of conspiracy, obtaining properties by false, stealing, impersonation and advance fee fraud, pleaded guilty to the charges slammed against him.According to the charge sheet, Ighodalo and others now at large, on May 24, 2011, impersonated the governor, by using his phone with intent to defraud and obtain the sum of N500,000 from the Owa Obokun of Ijesaland, Oba Gabriel Aromolaran.
He also continued to impersonate Aregbesola, when he accosted one Shenge Rahman and defrauded him of a sum of N200,000 before he was arrested.
In his submission, the prosecutor, Mr Biodun Badiora, informed the court that the convict committed the offence contrary to Section 8(c) and punishable under Section 1(3) of the Advance Free Fraud and other related offences Act, 2006.
Delivering his ruling, the presiding judge, Justice Oyejide Falola, held that the convict did not deserve to mingle with the society until he paid for his crime and subsequently sentenced him to 45 years in prison.