CRIME Woman to hang for killing step­daugh­ter

Daily Trust - - CRIME -

An Abudu High Court in Edo State has sen­tenced a step­mother and two teach­ers to death by hang­ing for con­spir­acy and mur­der of her three-year-old daugh­ter.

The con­victs, Betty Stephen, John­son Og­beide and Nancy Ai­wuyor, were said to have com­mit­ted the of­fence on Fe­bru­ary 29, 2009 at Erhi­borhibo vil­lage in Orhion­m­won Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Area of Edo State.

De­liv­er­ing the judg­ment, Jus­tice Geral­dine Imadeg­belo, said the pros­e­cu­tion led ev­i­dence to the fact that the step­mother of the vic­tim gave the three-year-old girl to the teacher, John­son Og­beide, who in turn, gave her to his col­league, Nancy Ai­wuyor to be sold for rit­ual pur­pose.

The court heard that the par­ents of the child left her in the cus­tody of her step­mother and went to the farm that fate­ful day but that when they re­turned, they couldn’t find the child only for the step­mother to con­fess that she and the two other sus­pects stole the child.

Jus­tice Imadeg­belo also held that the pros­e­cu­tion had es­tab­lished that the child was sold for the sum of N1.5 mil­lion. The court heard that they cut off the girl’s nine fin­gers and shaved her hair as di­rected for the rit­ual.

The court held that seven years af­ter the vic­tim dis­ap­peared in the hands of the con­victs with­out be­ing found, it was safe to hold that the child was dead.

“In the in­stant case Exhibits B to D cou­pled with the ev­i­dence of the pros­e­cu­tion wit­nesses and in par­tic­u­lar the con­fes­sional state­ment of the DW2 on how the rit­ual was to be per­formed and the dis­posal of the re­mains all sup­port the proof of the pros­e­cu­tion’s case that the vic­tim is dead.

“In the cir­cum­stances, the DW1, DW2 and DW5 can­not ex­cul­pate them­selves from the dis­ap­pear­ance and death of the de­ceased. The acts of the 1st, 2nd and 3rd ac­cused per­sons which caused the death of the de­ceased were un­law­ful,” Jus­tice Imadeg­belo said.

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