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Justice carried too far? Ikeja court hands death penalty to artisan for stealing $80

There has been uproar on social media after an Ikeja Special Offences Court presided over by Justice Mojisola Dada, yesterday sentenced 32-year-old vulcaniser Chidozie Onyinchiz to death by hanging for robbing a nurse of N57,000, about $80.

Justice Dada held that the prosecution had proved the three-count charge of conspiracy, armed robbery and membership of an unlawful society against Onyinchiz.

She said the convict’s attempt to wriggle out of the charges was futile.

This, she said, was because he had earlier confirmed to the police at Igando, Lagos, that his victim, Veronica Uwayzor sighted him and they both recognised each other at the time of the offence.

The defendant had stated that the complainant pointed at him as one of the boys armed with a pair of scissors and forcefully snatched her bag containing N57,000 at Akesan Bus Stop.

The complainant had stated that neither the defendant nor his accomplice, Ediri Endurance, (still at large) wore masks which made it possible for her to recognise Onyinchiz a few hours after the robbery.

In his first statement at Igando Police Station, the defendant confirmed that he is a vulcaniser and that he and Ediri went to Akesan Bus Stop on the day of the robbery.

Onyinchiz also conceded belonging to an unlawful society. He admitted, “This is my first time coming to Akesan to steal. I was initiated into Eiye Confraternity in 2009 but I have not killed before.”

Meanwhile, Nigerians on social media have faulted the judgment, while some described it as biased, and utterly harsh.

These distraught Nigerians on Instagram reminded the court to go after those who have siphoned public funds among others and still roaming the streets.

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