Couple sentenced to death by hanging for robbing, killing businesswoman

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An Ile-Ife, Osun State, High Court on Wednesday sentenced a couple to death by hanging for robbing and killing a businesswoman, Mrs. Bukola Taiwo of her money and kegs of palm oil in the state. 

The Presiding Judge, Justice Adedotun Onibokun, had convicted the couple, Mr. Fatai Jimoh and Lateefat Jimoh on three count-charge of conspiracy, murder and armed robbery before ruling that they should die by hanging.

The convicts were arraigned on June 2, 2014, before the matter was decided yesterday.

The prosecuting counsel from the state Ministry of Justice, Moses Faremi, who is also a principal state counsel, had during the hearing of the case explained to the court that the couple had conspired and committed the crime on August 12, 2009.

Faremi further explained that the convicts robbed and killed their victim, an Ibadan-based businesswoman, who had travelled down to Ile-Ife to buy palm oil.

Fatai and Lateefat were said to have gained access into a house located at Ikeketu Village via Garage Olode in Ife South Local Government Area of the state, grabbed the victim while sleeping and strangulated her to death.

Fatai’s wife was said to have smashed Mrs. Taiwo’s forehead with a sledge hammer.

According to the prosecutor, the convicts then made away with the sum of N48,780, belonging to the victim.

Faremi, who had called four witnesses, including a police inspector, a pathologist from the University College Hospital in Ibadan, the village head (Baale) of Ikeketu and some of the deceased’s neighbours, who saw the convicts parking kegs of palm oil out of the victim’s house.

The convicts in their confessional statement to the police, admitted that they broke into the room, where the deceased kept kegs of palm oil and stole them. They, however, said that they sold some of the kegs of palm oil.

They had pleaded not guilty to the charges, which were contrary to Section (1) 316  and punishable under Section 319 Cap 34,  Laws of Osun State.

The prosecution further argued that the offences contravened Section 6b and punishable under Section 1  (1) 2 (a) of the Robbery and Fire Arms (special provision) Act, Cap R11 Law of federation of Nigeria 200.

Justice Onibokun said that the prosecution had convinced the court beyond reasonable doubt that the couple committed the crime and consequently found them guilty on two count-charge of murder and armed robbery.

He, however, ruled that they should be hanged.