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Court sentences school driver, assistant for sexual assault on five-year-old pupil

By Yetunde Ayobami Ojo
17 May 2022   |   3:23 am
A Lagos State Domestic Violence and Sexual Offences Court, yesterday, sentenced a school bus driver, Tony Akpan to life imprisonment for sexually assaulting a five-year-old pupil.

Gavel PHOTO: Shutterstock

Discharges another
A Lagos State Domestic Violence and Sexual Offences Court, yesterday, sentenced a school bus driver, Tony Akpan to life imprisonment for sexually assaulting a five-year-old pupil.

  
Trial judge, Abiola Soladoye, found Akpan and his accomplice, Itoro Wilson, the bus assistant,  guilty of sexual assault in a charge brought against them by the state government.
     
Delivering judgment in the suit, the judge held that the prosecution provided overwhelming evidence to prove the charge against them.
 
Justice Soladoye sentenced Wilson to two years imprisonment for assisting his principal to evade justice. The prosecution called five witnesses to testify against the defendants at the trial.

The judge said that the testimony of the survivor was truthful and boldly narrated by her, while the medical Doctor’s evidence corroborated what she said.
    
The prosecution had told the court that the convicts committed the offence on October 20, 2017, on Magodo Road, Isheri, Lagos.
   
In another suit, the judge discharged and acquitted one Sunday Akpan, charged for defiling his 10-year-old step-daughter.

   
The prosecution had alleged that the defendant committed the offence on December 8, 2018 at about 2:00p.m. in Thomas Estate in Ajah.
    
The prosecution said his offence is contrary to sections 137 and 415 of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State, 2015.
 But in her judgment, the judge held that the prosecution did not call the vital witness (survivor) , who was alleged to have been defiled.
   
The judge said the onus is on a prosecution to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt. She said: “The essential elements of defilement were not put in place as the prosecution did not call the vital witness, who is the victim alleged to have been defiled.

“It is the duty of the prosecution to call admissible witnesses against the defendant. Ample opportunities were given to the prosecution to bring more witnesses to court but all to no avail. The court cannot wait forever.
 
“The court is only interested in the testimony of quality witnesses. I wish to say that the case has been a colossal waste of time. The defendant is hereby discharged and found not committing the crime.”

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