An Ikeja Chief Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday granted a temporary reprieve to a suspected child rapist, 42-year-old Obinna Okeje by granting him a N200,000 bail. Mr. Okeje, a resident of Oyetola Street, Anifowoshe, Ikeja, is charged with raping a neighbour’s 12-year-old daughter at their tenement building. He pleaded innocent of the offence. The Chief Magistrate, B.O. Osunsanmi, who gave the ruling, also granted him two sureties in like sum. Ms. Osunsanmi said one of sureties must be a staff member of a reputable organisation, while the other must be a blood relation of the accused or a landlord in Lagos State. In addition, she said the sureties should also provide evidence of tax payment to the state government. The magistrate directed that the case file should be duplicated and a copy sent to the State Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) for advice.
The prosecutor, Simeon Imhonwa, had told the court that the accused committed the offence on August 12 at his apartment. He said the accused assaulted the girl by touching her breasts and fingering her. “The girl claimed that the accused abused her twice, gave her N50.00 and warned her not to tell her mother. She further said that the incident normally happens at night between 8.00 p.m. and 9.00 p.m. whenever her mother sends her on errands. The defendant forcefully had carnal knowledge of the girl and also threatened to kill her if she dared to tell anyone. The girl’s parents, who resides in the same compound with the accused, reported the case to the police after their daughter narrated her ordeal,” Mr. Imhonwa said.
October 19 has been fixed for the trial of the case.