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‘How housekeeper slit throat of employer’s mother’


High Court

A Lagos State High Court yesterday heard how a housekeeper, Christian Yavine, allegedly murdered one Mariam Abiola, 79, the mother of his employer, by slitting her throat.

However, Yavine, a Beninoise, who was 18 when the murder was committed three years ago, denied the charge brought against him by the state.

The policeman’s evidence was translated into French in the courtroom by an interpreter for Yavine’s understanding.

The Investigating Police Officer, Inspector Godsgift Moses, being led in evidence by Akin George, the state prosecutor, said: “On July 3, 2014, I and ASP Adetunji Fisayo paid a visit to the crime scene. The room where the deceased was murdered was scattered with a lot of blood, seen on the mattress and the pillow.

“Our investigation team proceeded to the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja to inspect the remains of the deceased. On close observation, there was a deep cut across the throat of the deceased and she had several minor cuts on her neck, which showed a sign of a struggle. On July 7, 2014, the pathologist, Prof. John Obafunwa, conducted an autopsy to find out the primary cause of death.”

The prosecutor showed Moses two long kitchen knives, a black rope and a long pestle allegedly used in the crime, which were identified by him and marked as exhibits by Justice Oluwatoyin Ipaye. .

George, argued that Yavine allegedly committed the offence on July 1, 2014 at the residence of his employer, located at Block 74, Flat 2, Ijaiye Low Cost Housing Estate, Pen Cinema in Agege, Lagos.

He said: “The defendant killed a septuagenarian, Mrs. Mariam Abiola, the mother of his employer, by stabbing her repeatedly in the throat with a kitchen knife.

“The defendant committed the murder after his employer, Mrs. Joke Akinsemoyin, left the deceased and the teenage housekeeper in her home for a vigil, scheduled for 10:30p.m. in her church.

“When Akinsemoyin returned in the early hours of the morning, she inquired about her mother from Yavine and he told her that she was sleeping in the bedroom. When she wanted to go into the bedroom to check her, Yavine refused her entry and she immediately became suspicious.

“After a physical struggle with the defendant, she gained entry into the bedroom where she saw her mother’s body lying in a pool of her blood on the bed.”

Three witnesses, including Moses, have so far testified for the prosecution in the trial. Ipaye adjourned the case until May 4 for continuation of trial.

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