A federal court in Lagos has dismissed the charges of homosexuality filed by the police against internet sensation, James Brown and 46 persons in November, 2019.
The judge, Rilwan Aikawa made the order on Tuesday, stating that the charges against the defendants lacked “diligent prosecution” by the police.
According to him, J.I Ebhoremen, the prosecuting counsel, was, for the umpteenth time, absent from court and gave no reasonable explanation.
The defence counsel, Israel Usman, had noted that it was the ninth time Mr Ebhoremen did not show up in court since the case started in 2019.
Usman brought the judge’s attention to Section 356(5) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015 which provided a maximum of five adjournments at the instance of the prosecution in a criminal trial.
In his ruling, Mr Aikawa said;
“I agree entirely with defendants’ counsel that the prosecution’s attitude to this case is not satisfactory. In my view, this should not be. If the prosecution has a cogent reason not to be in court, he should have communicated in writing to the court and copy the defence counsel.
For whatever reason, the prosecution is no more capable or not willing to prosecute this case. Consequently, this case is struck out due to lack of diligent prosecution.”