…as accused counsel withdraws appearance, amidst tight security
By Kayode Adeoti
he Director of the Kwara State Director of the Public Prosecution (DPP) , Barr. Abdulmumini Adebimpe Jimoh has said the five suspects arrested in connection with Offa banks robbery that claimed no fewer than 31 lives including 9 serving police officers, have cases to answer.
He stated this, yesterday, during the arraignment of the accused persons; Ayoade Akinnibosun, Ibikunle Ogunleye, Adeola Abraham, Salahudeen Azeez, Niyi Ogundiran, amidst tight security as prison wardens were all on guard.
The DPP legal advice stated that Prima Facei case of criminal conspiracy, culpable homicide and armed robbery contrary to sections 97 and 221 of the Penal Code and section 6 (b) (a) of the robbery and firearms, sustainable against the five suspects Micheal Adikwu and 13 other suspects whose name were yet to be received by the Ministry of Justice.
It also added that Police investigation interim report of 5th June 2018 in the original case diary revealed that Moses Gowon, Ikechukwu Ebuka Nnaji, Kabiru Afolabi, Omoseni Kassim, Kabiru Alaboye aka ‘Kb’, Kayode Opadokun, Kazeem Abdulrasheed, Azeez Abdulmalik, Adewole Popoola, Adetoyese Muftau, Alexander Rueben, Aminu Ibrahim, Richard Buba Terry, Peter Jasper Kuufa were all arrested in connection with the crime.
It further added that none of the accused mentioned were made available to the state Department of Public Prosecution.
During the proceedings, Jimoh Abdulkadir, held brief for the Officer-in-Charge of Legal, Kwara State Police Command, Barr. Kunle Iwalaiye.
Abdulkadir reiterated before the court that based on the advice of the DPP, the accused persons have cases to answer.
He also pleaded with the court that it was imperative for the Police to be given more time to continue with its investigations to allow for the arrest of more suspects and transfer them to a proper court for trial.
But the counsel for the defendants, Barr. Abdulrasheed Lawal withdrew his appearance for the accused persons.
He informed the court that there was a letter before it requesting the withdrawal of his principal, Barr. Abdulwahab Bamidele, as defence counsel for all the accused persons.
Lawal said, “We have a letter before this honourable court dated 24th October, 2018 seeking the withdrawal of Barr. Abdulwahab Bamidele from representing all the accused persons and also myself holding the brief of Abdulwahab Bamidele from the record of this honourable court.
“We have also copied the O/C Legal of the Kwara Police Command. In any circumstance, we want this court to discountenance the said names from the case record because we had no full knowledge of the matter at inception and the information given was misconstrued.”
The magistrate Bio Saliu in his response granted the withdrawal of Bamidele as the defence counsel. He also agreed that the accused persons have cases to answer in respect of the alleged offences against them.
Saliu said, “This decision will allow the suspects to know their fates in good time.”
He, therefore, adjourned the case to Thursday, December 6, 2018. He also ordered that the accused persons remain in prison custody.