A 21-year-old Greatness Auta said he stole from St. Peter’s Catholic Church, Low Level Makurdi, to escape from a homosexual.
Auta said this on Tuesday when he was arraigned before Makurdi Magistrates’ Court 3B for alleged house trespass, mischief and theft.
The Police Prosecutor, Sgt. Kuegh Abugh, told the court that the case was reported by one Moses Akaaimom of Saint Peter’s Catholic Church, Low Level Makurdi at ‘B’ Division Police Station, High Level, on Sept. 27.
Mr Abugh said that on the same date after Morning Mass, one Terpase Akaayar opened the Sacristy for people who have private intentions to enter and saw one Greatness Auta who mischievously broke into the sacristy through the window and stole the sum of N8,000 inside Saint Vincent De Poor Serving Box.
He said during investigation, Auta was arrested in connection with the crime and the said N8,000 was recovered from him.
He said investigation into the matter had been completed and called for summary trial of the accused.
The prosecutor said the accused contravened Sections 439, 327 and 288 of the Penal Code Law.
When the case came up for mention, the accused admitted stealing N11,000 inside the chapel (sacristy) and not N8,000 as charged.
Auta further revealed that he stole after he became frustrated in Makurdi town to escape from one Alhaji Sani, who had earlier wanted to sleep with him.
He claimed he hails from Akwanga, a Catholic and member of St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, Akwanga, Nasarawa State, and not a criminal.
He said what he needed from the priest was either transportation or for him to contact his counterpart at St. Patrick’s Catholic Parish, Akwanga, where he worships so that they can come for him, but he refused to help him.
“I am from Akwanga. One Alhaji Sani promised to bring me to Makurdi to get a job but on our way to Makurdi he wanted to sleep with me inside the car which I refused.
“I even informed the driver but he did nothing about it and they subsequently pushed me out of the car.
“When I was pushed out of the car, I saw some Police officers and explained to them but they said they were handicapped and had no money to transport me back to Akwanga.
“When things became extremely tough for me, I went to St. Peter’s Catholic Church, Low Level Makurdi, and told the priest my situation and pleaded with him to contact my parish in Akwanga, which he didn’t do for good four days.
“He later told me that he has nothing to do for me. At that point, I became frustrated and went and lay down inside the Church Chapel.
“Inside the chapel, I saw several envelops but picked only one which contain N11,000 and I was caught,” he said.
Auta said that the only thing he needed was transportation back to Akwanga and that he is not a criminal.
The Magistrate, Kadoom Ghasha, in her judgment convicted the accused in all the offences.
Gbasha sentenced the accused to one month imprisonment for each offence, to run concurrently with an option of N1,000 fine.
She noted that the accused story and behaviour in court showed that he was a first timer.