A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has sentenced one Miracle Ita to two years in jail for human trafficking of an under-aged teenage girl from Oron, Akwa-Ibom to Lagos for prostitution. She is to also pay a fine of N250, 000.
Miracle Ita is said to 27 years of age and she works in Lagos as a professional prostitute. She was arrested by operatives of the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) in the year 2016 at Okon Brothel, Ajah, Lagos where she was exploiting the victim.
When she was arraigned in Court on February 24, 2016, she pleaded not guilty to the one count charge of trafficking in persons preferred against her. Upon that plea, trial on the case with Charge number, FHC/L/57C/2016 commenced on May 12, 2016. Subsequently, the parties adopted their final written addresses on December 11, 2017.
Delivering judgement on Tuesday, Honourable Justice Obiozor found her guilty and subsequently sentenced her to 2 years imprisonment with additional fine of N250,000 (Two Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira only).
In her reaction to the verdict, the Director-General of NAPTIP, Dame Julie Okah-Donli expressed appreciation to the trial Judge and the judiciary for rising up to the occasion in the fight against human trafficking.
In her words:
“When activities like this go on in the society and we all turn a blind eye to it. Then you will understand that there is a problem somewhere. We have been leading the fight against human trafficking, especially when it concerns under-aged girls. This will serve as a lesson to other people that are involved in bringing these innocent girls down to Lagos and other parts of the country”
She said that NAPTIP with the cooperation of the judiciary and other sister Law Enforcement Agencies will leave no stones unturned in ridding the country of human trafficking. She also maintained that adequate sensitization will be done across the country to sensitize people about this vice.