A 45-year-old trader has been sentenced to death by hanging for armed robbery and another 15 years imprisonment for raping a 24-year-old student.
Justice Raliatu Adebiyi of an Ikeja High Court, Lagos State on Thursday sentenced Morufu Adekoya, aka Six Tiger, a two-count of armed robbery and rape.
‘Six Tiger’ was initially charged alongside two others – Adefowope Kazeem, 28-year-old cobbler, and Chief Jimoh Balogun, a 58-year-old traditional ruler and Baale of Odo Onosa community since September 2013 – on a four-count.
The State Prosecutor, Mrs O. R Ahmed Muili, told the court that the convict committed the offences on March 26, 2014 at Odo-onosa Epe, Lagos.
Mrs Muili had earlier told the court that the three defendants, while heavily armed, invaded the community and allegedly robbed them off their valuables, including raping a 24-year-old undergraduate student.
The prosecution, however, called eight witnesses to testify against the defendants, including the rape victim, her brother, a medical doctor and so on.
While delivering judgement on the case, Justice Adebiyi discharged and acquitted Kazeem and Chief Balogun (2nd and 3rd defendant respectively) on all four counts bordering on conspiracy, armed robbery and rape.
The judge said that the prosecution was not able to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the 2nd and 3rd defendants actually conspired and committed the offences.
Justice Adebiyi said,
“The court finds that the prosecution has failed to prove that the 1st, 2nd and 3rd defendants conspired to commit the alleged offence of robbery. The prosecution’s evidence pointed only to the 1st defendant (Adekoya) who was positively identified at the scene of the crime.
“However, the 1st, 2nd and 3rd defendants are hereby discharged on count 1 (conspiracy to robbery). The 2nd and 3rd defendants are also discharged on count 2, 3 and 4 (armed robbery and rape).”