About 10 gunmen invaded three courts in Makurdi, the Benue State capital city, with sophisticated guns and shot sporadically in the air and carted away case files and other items.
Nigerian Tribune learnt that the gunmen invaded the premises which contain High Court 9, Magistrate Court and Upper Area Court situated about 500 metres away from state police headquarters around 8am and shot sporadically in the air to scare people away.
Ironically, at High Court, wife of deputy governor, Justice Mary Abounu, was presiding when the gunmen stormed her court and held both the judge and lawyers hostage.
Narrating the ordeal to the State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Michael Gusa while conducting him round the court premises, the magistrate in charge of Chief Magistrate Court 1, Isaac Ajim said the criminal stormed the court, broke the padlock of the court room and the chambers, carted away one the computers, one printer, a generator and window curtains, as well as files for already disposed and indisposed cases.
Mr. Ajim said that after the criminals were done with his court, they proceeded to High Court 9, presided over by wife of the deputy Governor, Justice Mary Abounu, and carted away a refrigerator, three stabilizers, set of computer, window blinds and left behind empty bottles of drinks.
At the Upper Area Court, the registrar, Mrs Sarah Gboji told the Justice Commissioner that the thieves made away with N280,000. It was also revealed from the courts that the criminals after they have done with their mission, brought their own padlock and lock up the court entrance.
It was, however, gathered from an anonymous source from one of the invaded courts that the invasion had a political undertone to frustrate some of the high profile but culpable homicide cases being handled by the invaded courts.
A source from one of the courts disclosed that the criminals after they had done with their mission, brought their own padlock and locked up the court.
Confirming the invasion, the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Michael Gusa who condemned the act, however, appealed to the youths to always engage themselves into meaningful ventures rather than indulge into criminality.
Gusa who called on youths to embrace the amnesty programme of the state governor instead of engaging in criminal activities, however, assured that the perpetrators of the act would be fished out and punished appropriately.
Confirming the incidence, the state Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO Moses Yamu said three security guards have already being invited for interrogation.
He assured that the culprits will sure be arrested and made to face the wrath of the law.