3 kidnappers sentenced to death by hanging for abduction and murder of a toddler

An Akure High Court on Thursday sentenced three men to death by hanging after being found guilty of kidnapping and murdering a one-and-half-year-old Rachael Akingboye.

The convicts are Olusegun Obaro, Jonah Lase and Theophilus Friday.

The presiding judge, Justice Olusegun Odusola, said the first and second accused persons (Obaro, Lase) were guilty of kidnapping and murder, while the third accused person was only guilty of murder.

The convicts were charged with two counts bordering on kidnapping and murdering Akingboye, “contrary to and punishable under Section 3 of the Ondo State Anti-Kidnapping and Abduction Law, 2010, punishable under Section 319 of the Criminal Code Laws of Ondo State.”

The accused were said to have kidnapped the deceased in the night from her parent’s residence at Ikorigho in Igbokoda on June 17, 2011.

After the kidnap, the corpse of the baby was said to have been found near the residence of the parents with her right eye, right ear, right breast and the right part of her scalp removed.

The accused were said to have pleaded not guilty to the charges at the commencement of the trial.

However, Odusola in his judgment submitted that the totality of the evidence before him showed that the prosecution had proven that the three accused persons were responsible for the death of the deceased.

He said, “The offences for which the accused were charged are strict liability offences. Death penalty is the punishment for each of the counts. Having found the 1st and 2nd accused guilty of both counts, the 3rd accused is guilty of murder.

“In sum, I hereby sentence Olusegun Obaro, Jonah Lase and Theophilus Friday to death by hanging.”