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UNILAG students re-arraigned for alleged gang rape

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The Government of the State of Lagos on Tuesday again accused five students at the University of Lagos (UNILAG) on Thursday in a court of sexual crimes and domestic violence Ikeja by the Lagos state government prosecution team for alleged gang rape. One-year student of the institution (reserved name).

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the re-worked are Moboluwaji Omowole, 19, Chuka Chukwu, 19, Pace Nwankama, 19, James Aguedu, 20 and Josephine Osemeka, 20.

They were initially tried on February 26 and declared innocent of a three-person charge for contaminating a child, which allowed contamination of a child in a room and the contract.

Thursday’s proceedings were scheduled for the plaintiff’s interrogation, but prosecutors said that, according to new facts emerging from the applicant’s testimony on February 26th, the defendants were again tried with a modified charge of five the indictment.

During the reorganization, they are declared innocent of new accusations of contamination of a child, which allows contamination of a child, procurement and sexual aggression.

According to dr. Jide Martins, director of the prosecutor’s office (DPP), the accused committed the offenses in 2017 to UNILAG, Akoka, Lagos.

“Omowole, Chukwu and Aguedo sometime in the month January and sometime in the month of February 2017 defiled the complainant by having unlawful sexual intercourse with her.

“Chukwu sometime in January 2017 at No. 25, Shobande St., Akoka, Yaba, Lagos knowingly allowed Omowole to defile the complainant by having unlawful sexual intercourse with her.

“Nwankama, Aguedo and Osameka between the months of January to March 2017 were into the procuration (obtaining) of young girls for the purpose of defilement.

“Osemeka sometime in the month of January 2017, in UNILAG, sexually assaulted the complainant by kissing her,” he said.

The offence, he said, contravened the provisions of sections 137, 138, 140(1)(a) and 263 of the Criminal Law of Lagos 2015.

Following their re-arraignment, Mr Adebisi Ademuwagun, the defence counsel to Omowole in view of the new charges, requested for an adjournment in order to re-strategise.

“The charge against the first defendant (Omowole) has increased from one to two and different dates and venues have also been introduced in the charge.

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“It is our humble submission that the first defendant be given ample opportunity to prepare to meet this charge in accordance with the requirement of fair hearing as contained on Section 36 of the 1999 Constitution.

“When the penalty for which the first defendant is charged is heavy which is life imprisonment, it isn’t our intention to delay the trial but it is our duty to assist this court in its duties.

“We would be pleading with your lordship to allow this matter to be adjourned to give the first defendant the opportunity to prepare his case,” Ademuwagun said.

Mr R.A Oshodi, the defence counsel to Chukwu, Mr O. C Aigbangbee the defence counsel to Nwankama, Mr O. C Fapohunda defence counsel to
Aguedu and Mr Ken Edechime the defence counsel to Osemeka aligned themselves to the submission of Ademuwagun.

They all said that in view of the new charges, they requested for adequate time to evaluate the charges, prepare for the trial and to cross-examine the complainant.

Justice Abiola Soladoye in a brief ruling, obliged the requests of the defence counsel.

“Having listened to the submissions of both the defence and prosecution counsel, it is in the interest of justice that sufficient time be given to counsel to evaluate and re-strategise.

“This case is adjourned till Oct. 15,” she said.

The NAN reports that the plaintiff had declared February 26 that he was attracted to Nwankama, who was his roommate at High Rise, a shelter for UNILAG employees.

She said she was raped in group by High Rise by eight male students and was sexually assaulted by Osemeka.

He claimed that gang rape and sexual assault at High Rise have been resumed.

According to the author, she was also blackmailed with the video and at other times she was raped in a group by the accused and their accomplices who are now free.