Onah, from Enugu State, was charged by the National Agency for Food, Drugs, Administration and Control (NAFDAC) on behalf of the Federal Government. A graduate of Microbiology of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka and a post-graduate student of Mass Communication, Onah resides at No 12, Mosalashi St., Alagbado Lagos. She was arraigned on February 15 and pleaded guilty to a five-count charge bordering on possession and sale of fake drugs, offences committed on January 26. The prosecutor Mr. Shamaki Umar had told the court that the accused sold fake brand of 200 mg of Amazon Amagyl Metronidazole tablets to members of the public. The accused was remanded in prison pending the review of facts. Wednesday, Umar reviewed the facts of the case and presented the laboratory analysis of the confiscated drugs which showed that they were fake and contained 20 rather than 200 milligrams The convict’s counsel Mr. Chinedu Moore in his allocutus pleaded for leniency and urged the court to temper justice with mercy. He submitted that apart from the fact that she was sick, she was also a first time offender who did not have the intent to manufacture or sell fake drugs. Amidst sobs the woman herself also pleaded for mercy, saying she didn’t know the drugs were fake. But the prosecutor urged the court to award her the maximum sentence according to the law. He said: “When she was asked to show the operatives of NAFDAC where the drugs were being manufactured, she took them to an unknown address that does not exist. When they eventually traced her residence, they discovered items she used in manufacturing the drugs such as weighing scales and labels. “With all intent and purposes my lord, she was manufacturing them herself. Therefore, I urge my lord to award maximum sentence as provided by law so as to serve as deterrent to others.” In his judgment, Justice (Prof.) Chuka Obiozor said: “I will give you a second chance as a first offender but those who took your drugs and died had no second chance”. He reprimanded the convict for being a 2:1 graduate of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka who chose to deal on fake drugs instead of staying in the village to find something worthy to do, if she could not get a decent job in Lagos. The judge said: “Clara Onah, you are hereby sentenced to seven years imprisonment at the women wing of the Kirikiri Maximum Prison on each of the count charges. They are to run concurrently starting from January 26, when you were arrested and detained. “The convict was also fined N50,000 on count five. The prosecution should hold on to the exhibits pending the elapse of the time of appeal of this judgment. At the elapse of appeal window, the prosecution should destroy it.” The offences contravened the provisions of section 1(1) (a), 3, and 3 (1) of the Counterfeit and Fake Drugs Unwholesome Processed Foods, (Miscellaneous Provision) Act Cap 34, Laws of the Federation, 2004.]]>

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