A former Governor of Plateau State and serving senator, Joshua Dariye, wept as the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, Gudu, Abuja, on Tuesday sentenced him to 14 years’ imprisonment on charges of criminal breach of trust and misappropriation of over N1.16bn belonging to the state.
Justice Adebukola Banjoko in a judgment which took her six and a half hours to read convicted the ex-governor on 15 out the 23 counts preferred against him.
The Punch reported that the judge barely a fortnight ago, imposed 14 years’ jail term on ex-Governor of Taraba State, Jolly Nyame, on similar charges.
On Tuesday she sentenced Dariye to two years imprisonment on each of the five counts bordering on criminal misappropriation and 14 years’ jail term on each of the 11 counts of criminal breach of trust.
The judge, however, ruled that all the sentences would run concurrently, implying that the convict would have to spend 14 years in jail.
The punishments imposed on the ex-governor for the two categories of offences of criminal breach of trust and criminal misappropriation are the maximum as provided under sections 315 and 309 of the Penal Code Act, respectively.
The judge threw out eight of the 23 charges on the grounds of either duplicity or lack of sufficient evidence.
Economic and Financial Crimes Commission’s lawyer, Mr. Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), had in opposing the defence lawyer’s plea for mercy, urged the court to impose the maximum sentence to serve as deterrence to others.