The Federal High Court sitting in Ilorin, Kwara state, has sentenced one Buba Muhammed, a 37-year-old truck-driver, to one-year imprisonment over illegal possession of solid minerals .
The Court, presided by Justice Muhammed Sani, also ordered the forfeiture of the truck used as means of transportation of the illegally acquired minerals to the Federal Government .
The illegal minerals were confirmed by the Nigerian Geological Survey Agency (NGSA) to include lepidolite, montmorillonite and chrysocolla.
Lepidolite is one of the raw materials usually transported outside the country for production of batteries for vehicles, cell phones, cameras and other electronic devices.
The Zonal Commander of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ilorin Command, Michael Nzekwe had warned operators in the mining sector in Kwara State against illegal mining activities and non-payment of royalties to the Federal Government, which is an “act of economic sabotage”.
The convict was arrested by operatives of the Ilorin Zonal Command of the EFCC, while acting on credible intelligence at Lade, Pategi Local Government Area of Kwara State.
Buba was prosecuted on one-count charge by the anti-graft agency, to which he pleaded guilty upon arraignment.
Reporting by Aliyu Rabiu; Editing by Fany Olumoye, Julian Osamoto and Tony Okerafor