Former Abia State Governor, Orji Kalu, who was sentenced to 12 years in prison for fraud, pleaded with officials of the Nigeria Correctional Service not to handcuff him in public.

Kalu, who appeared shaken, said, “Where are you taking us to now? Please don’t handcuff me. I will follow you.”

A short while earlier, Kalu wiped tears from his eyes with a white handkerchief as Justice Idris Mohammed Idris began reading an abridged version of the 228-page judgment, a report by TheNation said.

Kalu’s associate, Udeogu, was sentenced to 10 years in prison while the company, which was used in perpetrating the fraud, Slok Limited, was ordered to be wound up by Justice Mohammed.

The case began in 2007, 12 years ago, when they were first arraigned for the offences but before a different judge.

In an amended 39 counts, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission proved that they conspired and divert N7.65bn from the coffers of the Abia State.

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