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List of Punishable Crimes in Nigeria’

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Acts performed by individuals, groups of persons or an organization that are harmful to some individuals, a community, society or the state, of which are forbidden and punishable by law are referred to as crimes. The government through instituted authority possesses the power to restrict the liberty of an individual that commits a crime, and provide punishment based on the severity of the crime perpetrated. There are several crimes that are publishable by the law in Nigeria. It is however pertinent to note that while every crime breaks the law, not every infringement on the law counts as a crime such as breach of private law, torts, and contracts breach.

This is a list of punishable crimes in Nigeria:

  • Treason
  • Instigating invasion of Nigeria
  • Concealment of treason
  • Treasonable felonies
  • Promoting inter-communal war
  • Inciting a mutiny
  • Aiding and inciting to mutinous acts or disobedience of members of the Armed Forces or Policemen
  • Assisting escape of prisoners of war
  • Overt act
  • Causing disaffection among members of the Armed Forces, Police or Prison Officers
  • Going armed to cause fear
  • Smuggling in disguise
  • Forcible entry
  • Provoking breach of peace by offensive publication
  • Disclosure of official documents
  • Public officers inviting bribes on accounts of their own action
  • The person giving bribes on accounts of actions of public officers
  • The person inviting bribes on accounts of actions by public officers
  • Extortion by public officials
  • Public officers interested in contracts
  • False claim by a public official
  • Abuse of office
  • False certificates by public officers
  • Administering extra-judicial oaths
  • False assumption of authority
  • Impersonating public officers
  • Impersonating members of Armed Forces or Police
  • Unlawfully wearing the uniform of the Armed Forces
  • Selling it uniforms of the Armed Forces to unauthorized
  • Bargaining for offices in public service
  • Making false statements to public officers with the intent
  • Perjury
  • Fabricating evidence
  • Corruption of witnesses
  • Deceiving witnesses
  • Preventing witnesses from attending
  • Conspiracy to bring a false accusation
  • Destroying evidence
  • Perverting justice
  • Contempt of court
  • Aiding prisoners to escape
  • Permitting escape of prisoners
  • Prison officers accessory to breach of discipline
  • Removing property under lawful seizure
  • Obstructing officers of courts of justice
  • Counterfeiting gold and silver coin
  • Preparation for coining gold and silver coin
  • Unlawful inquiries with the object of making counterfeit coins
  • Repeated uttering of counterfeit current gold or silver coin and the possession of such coins
  • Making, issue, and circulation of promissory notes payable to bearer on demand, without authority
  • Stopping mail by post
  • Intercepting postal matter
  • Tampering with postal matter
  • Wilful misdelivery of a postal order
  • Obtaining postal matter by false pretense
  • Secreting letters and telegrams
  • Fraudulent issue of money orders and postal orders
  • Fraudulent messages respecting money orders
  • Unlawful franking of letter
  • Sending dangerous things by post
  • Retarding delivery of postal matter
  • Obstructing mails
  • False statements in an application for passports
  • False statements in statements required to be under oath
  • False declaration and statement
  • Violation of secrecy of the postal matter
  • Shooting at custom boats or officers
  • Resisting officers engaged in preventing smuggling
  • Refusal of public officials to perform a duty
  • Neglect of peace officers to suppress a riot
  • Neglect to aid in suppressing riots
  • Neglect to aid in arresting offenders
  • Disobedience to Act, Law, or Statute
  • Disobedience to a lawful order issued by constituted authority
  • Offering violence to officiating ministers of religion
  • Disturbing religious worship
  • Indecent practices between males
  • Causing or encouraging the seduction or prostitution of a girl under sixteen
  • Defilement of girls under thirteen
  • Allowing persons under sixteen to be in brothels
  • Procuring defilement of women by threats, fraud, or administering drugs
  • Abduction of a girl under eighteen years of age with the intent to have carnal knowledge
  • Keeping brothel
  • Prostitution
  • Unlawful detention with the intent to defile
  • Conspiracy to defile
  • Attempts to procure abortion
  • Attempt to procure own miscarriage
  • Supplying drugs or instruments to procure abortion
  • Exposing for sale things unfit for food or drink
  • Adulteration of food and drink intended for sale
  • Dealing in diseased meat
  • Sale of matches with white phosphorus and the use of white phosphorus in the manufacture of matches
  • Murder
  • Killing on provocation
  • Attempt to murder
  • Attempt to murder by convict
  • Accessory after the fact to murder
  • Written threats to murder
  • Conspiring to murder
  • Killing unborn child
  • Concealing of birth of children
  • Unlawful possession of a human head
  • Acts attempted to cause grievous harm or prevent arrest
  • Grievous harm
  • Preventing escape from wreck
  • Intentionally endangering persons traveling by railway
  • Attempting to injure by explosive devices
  • Maliciously administering poison with the intent to harm
  • Wounding and similar acts
  • Endangering the life or health of apprentices or servants
  • Abandoning or exposing children
  • Setting man-trap
  • Reckless and negligent acts
  • Sending unseaworthy ships to sea
  • Endangering steamships by tampering with machinery
  • Evading laws as to shipping dangerous goods
  • Assaults on persons protecting wreck
  • Rape
  • Abduction
  • Kidnapping
  • Deprivation of liberty
  • Compelling action by intimidation
  • Compelling action by assault
  • Concealment of matters affecting liberty
  • Slave dealing
  • Bigamy
  • Child-stealing
  • Desertion of children
  • Defamation
  • Stealing by persons in office
  • Bringing stolen goods to Nigeria
  • Fraudulent disposition of mortgaged goods
  • Fraudulent appropriation of power
  • Robbery
  • Attempted robbery
  • Burglary
  • Obtaining goods by false pretenses
  • Conspiracy to defraud
  • Frauds on sale or mortgage of property
  • Pretending to exercise witchcraft or tell fortune
  • Receiving stolen property
  • Unlawful possession of arms belonging to the Armed or Police Forces
  • Taking reward for recovering of property obtained by means of felony or misdemeanor
  • Trustees fraudulently disposing of trust property
  • Directors and officers of corporations falsifying books or accounts
  • False statement by officials or companies
  • Fraudulent false accounting
  • Fraudulent accounting by a public officer
  • Arson
  • Attempt to commit arson
  • Obstructing aircrafts
  • Forgery
  • Casting away ships
  • Attempt to destroy property by explosives
  • Removing boundary marks with intent to defraud
  • Wilful damage to survey and boundary marks
  • Sending false certificate of marriage to the registrar
  • Lending certificates for personation
  • Making or dealing in infringing copies of copyright work
  • Corrupt acceptance of the gift
  • Interference with an executive or legislative order
  • Publication of false news with the intent to cause fear and alarm to the public
  • Unlawful drilling
  • Fouling water
  • Assembling for the purpose of smuggling
  • Misconduct with regards to corpses



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