Court Discharges Suspects In Murder Of Guardian Editor

THERE is not yet justice for Mr. Bayo Ohu, the late Assistant News Editor of The Guardian, as Justice Lateefat Okunu of the Lagos High Court, Ikeja yesterday discharged three persons charged for conspiracy and his murder.

The discharged accused are Dada Yemi Adesanya, Ganiu Sulemon and Idris Balogun.

Ruling on a no case submission filed by the defence counsel, Yemi Omodele, Justice Okunnu held that the prosecution failed to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt.

The court stated that no evidence whatsoever was placed before the court to show that the defendants were at the scene of the alleged crime.

Justice Okunu observed that none of the police officers listed before the court as witnesses came to testify, saying: “They abandoned the case and did not turn up.”

The court further held that there was no correlation in the evidence of Kashi Taiwo (PW1) and Bode Adetola (PW2) that the defendants were the persons that killed Ohu.

Besides, the court held that what the prosecution had against the defendants was at best mere suspicion, which goes to no issue, adding that throughout the trial, no legally admissible evidence was tendered by the prosecution.

The Lagos State had in suit number ID/216C/2010 accused Adesina, Sulemon and Balogun of conspiracy and murder of Ohu.

They were said to have on September 20, 2009, at No. 9 Oyeniji Street, Odukoya Estate, Akowonjo, Egbeda in Ikeja Judicial Division, armed with offensive weapons, robbed one Ohu of one lap top computer and two mobile telephone sets.

They were also alleged to have murdered Ohu in the process of robbing him of his belongings.

But the defence counsel, Omodele, in his no case submission, argued that the prosecution charged the defendants to court without being able to link them with the alleged offences, even with the evidence of their witnesses.

He submitted that in a criminal proceeding, it was not enough for the prosecution to bring a charge against a defendant for an alleged offence, adding it was also necessary to link the defendant with the offence.

He urged the court to discharge and acquit the accused persons, saying the prosecution had failed to prove its case beyond reasonable doubts, as required by the law.

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