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'fleeing persecution' Asylum-seeker assumed false identity to escape gender based violence in Nigeria

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AN ASYLUM-seeker who claimed she used a stolen passport to get to Ireland after fleeing persecution and gender-based violence has avoided a criminal conviction and a jail sentence.

Nigerian citizen Osamudiamen Ogie, 26, with an address at Shangan Road, Ballymun, Dublin, pleaded guilty to using a stolen passport.

Dublin District Court heard Ogie produced an Irish passport when she arrived in Dublin on a Turkish Airlines flight from Istanbul on September 10, 2021.

Judge Treasa Kelly heard the Irish passport was in the name of another person, and she used it to gain entry and claim asylum. Her Nigerian passport was also on her at the time.

The arresting garda agreed with the defence that people often arrive in that manner to apply for asylum.

In a plea for leniency, the court heard Ogie was "fleeing persecution" in her country and had experienced gender and sexuality-based violence.

Her solicitor said that the agricultural science graduate has a good chance of being granted protection in Ireland.

The court heard this was her first time to enter the State, and she co-operated with gardai.

Judge Kelly noted she had no prior criminal convictions and applied the Probation of Offenders Act.

The charges were contrary to the Passports Act and Theft and Fraud Act.

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