Kidnap kingpin, Evans
While speaking at a Lagos High Court sitting in Igbosere on Friday suspected kidnap kingpin, Chukwudumeme Onwuamadike, a.k.a Evans, asked the court to quash all the five criminal charges filed against him by Lagos State Government.
According to The Nation, Evans told Justice Adedayo Akintoye that his trial was an abuse of court processes because similar charges had been filed against him by the state at the Ikeja Division of the court.
He added that the law requires that all the cases must be consolidated and brought before one judge.
His trial before Justice Akintoye is the fourth and fifth in a series of murder, attempted murder and kidnap charges brought against him by the state since his arrest in his Magodo, Lagos home, on June 10 last year. But only two charges are before Justice Akintoye.
Three multiple-count charges are before Justices Hakeem Oshodi and Oluwatoyin Taiwo of Ikeja Division of the court.
In the case before Justice Akintoye, Evans and three others are facing a fresh five-count charge of conspiracy to kidnap, kidnapping and attempted murder. His co-defendants are – Joseph Emeka, Ugochukwu Nwachukwu and Victor Aduba.
In the second charge, Evans, Joseph Emeka, Linus Okpara and Victor Aduba are facing similar counts.
At the resumed hearing of the case on Friday, Evans’ counsel, Mr. Olukoya Ogungbeje, argued that all the charges were “grossly defective, repetitive and abuse of court processes.”
Ogungbeje said: “Apart from the counts being of same offence, same section of the law (Section 153 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Law (ACJL) is being provided in these charges.
“I submit that the prosecution misfired by bringing different charges and instituting the same case in different courts.
“I urge Your Lordship to quash the charges because they are defective and abuse of court process.”
But Director for Public Prosecutions (DPP), Ms Titilayo Shitta-Bey, opposed him. She said: “The general rule is that every offence must be in a separate count.”
Shitta-Bey said the first defendant was charged with attempt to murder Chief James Udoji in count three, while in count four, he was charged with attempt to murder Mr. Donald Nwonye.
“It will be against the provisions of the law to lump the two offences in one count,” she added.
Stay updated with the latest Nigerian news from Information Nigeria