A 52-year-old trader, Moruf Olushola, charged with bathing a pregnant woman and her two children with petrol with intent to set them ablaze was on Thursday brought before an Ikeja Magistrates’ Court in Lagos.
The defendant, who resides at Surulere, Lagos, was arraigned before Magistrate B.O Osunsanmi on a two-count charge of breach of peace and attempt to commit arson.
Mr Olushola, however, denied committing the offences and was admitted to a bail of N100,000 with two sureties in like sum.
Mrs Osunsanmi said that the sureties should be gainfully employed and show evidence of two years tax payment to the Lagos State Government.
The Prosecutor, ASP Ezekiel Ayorinde, told the court that the defendant committed the offences on Feb. 16 at Ayobo, Lagos.
He alleged that the defendant attempted to commit arson by pouring petrol on Mrs Oyinye Bernard and her children.
Mr Ayorinde said: “The defendant, who was under the influence of alcohol, fell down in front of the complainant’s shop and slept off.
“When he woke up from his drunkenness, he wrongly accused the complainant of stealing his phone.
“In the process, he poured petrol on the pregnant complainant, her children and also sprinkled her shop with petrol.
“He was looking for matches or lighter in order to set them ablaze. People rushed to the scene to rescue the complainant and her children.”
The prosecutor said that the defendant was handed over to the police.
According to him, the offences violate Sections 168 and 342 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Section 342 stipulates 14 years imprisonment for attempted arson.
The magistrate adjourned the case until March 9 for mention.