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NELSON FRIDAY v. THE STATE

(2016) LPELR-40638(SC)

In The Supreme Court of Nigeria

On Friday, the 1st day of July, 2016

SC.383/2014


Before Their Lordships

IBRAHIM TANKO MUHAMMAD Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria

NWALI SYLVESTER NGWUTA Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria

KUMAI BAYANG AKA'AHS Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria

CHIMA CENTUS NWEZE Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria

AMIRU SANUSI Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria


Between

NELSON FRIDAY - Appellant(s)

AND

THE STATE - Respondent(s)


Summary

INTRODUCTION: This appeal borders on the Offence of Armed Robbery.
FACTS: Appellant and two others were arraigned on a two count charge of conspiracy to commit armed robbery and armed robbery. The charge was laid before the High Court of Justice of Ondo State, Akure Judicial Division. Appellant was the 3rd accused person.
The prosecution alleged that appellant and his co-accused persons invaded the premises of Hon. Justice Williams Akin Akintoroye on the 1st day of February, 2008. They were armed and robbed the Judge of the sum of N14,000.00, two laptop computers, and other valuables belonging to the Judge and his household.
It was alleged that the appellant and his co-accused inflicted various degrees of injury on the Judge and members of his household. Some of the accused persons were alleged to have raped the family's housemaid. Appellant and his co-accused pleaded not guilty to each count of the charge.

The learned trial Judge found each accused guilty as charged on each count of the charge and sentenced each to death by hanging on 16th August, 2012.

Appellant was aggrieved and he appealed to the Court of Appeal, Akure Division. Owoade, JCA, with whom Denton-West and Jombo-Ofo, JCA, agreed, dismissed the appellant's appeal on the 16th day of May, 2014.
Still aggrieved, appellant filed this appeal to the Apex Court.
ISSUES: Appellant formulated the following two issues for the Court to resolve:
"(i) Whether the lower Court was right in affirming the decision of the learned trial Judge that the prosecution led credible evidence of identification of the appellant as one of the armed robbers that attacked PW1 and PW2.
(ii) Whether having regard to the circumstances and from the totality of the evidence on record, the lower Court was right in upholding the decision of the trial Court that the prosecution proved the offences of conspiracy to rob and armed robbery against the appellant beyond reasonable doubt." DECISION/HELD: In a unanimous decision. the appeal was held to be devoid of merit. It was thereby dismissed. The decisions of the lower Courts were affirmed.


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