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ARIBIGBOLA AWOSIKA v. THE STATE

(2018) LPELR-44351(SC)

In The Supreme Court of Nigeria

On Friday, the 20th day of April, 2018

SC.677/2013


Before Their Lordships

OLABODE RHODES-VIVOUR Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria

MARY UKAEGO PETER-ODILI Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria

JOHN INYANG OKORO Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria

AMIRU SANUSI Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria

SIDI DAUDA BAGE Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria


Between

ARIBIGBOLA AWOSIKA - Appellant(s)

AND

THE STATE - Respondent(s)


Other Citations

; ;


Summary

INTRODUCTION:
This appeal borders on the Offences of Conspiracy to commit armed robbery and Armed Robbery.
FACTS:
This appeal emanates from the Judgment of the Ibadan division of the Court of Appeal delivered on 10th day of March 2010 which partially affirmed the Judgment of High Court of Justice, Ogun State sitting at Ijebu-Ode delivered on 18th January 2007.


The facts giving rise to this appeal are that the appellant, his co-accused, one Tajudeen Adisa and one other person at large were alleged to have, while being armed with offensive weapons, raided the house of Mrs Yemi Fowosere and during the robbery attack, her personal effects which included her handsets, wristwatches and some money were stolen after breaking the doors of the house. They were also alleged to have robbed PW2 and PW3 who also reside in the said compound of some money and properties in their respective rooms. The prosecution stated that a day after the robbery incidence, the appellant left Ijebu-Ode for Lagos with the co-accused. However, on their way they ran into a check-point mounted by men of OPC who arrested the appellant and handed him over to the Police. The appellant later led the police to Lagos where his co-accused Taludeen Adisa, was also arrested. The appellant during investigation volunteered a confessional statement at the State CID Abeokuta, which was tendered at the trial without objection by the defence. 

During the trial, the prosecution in proof of its case, called four witnesses to testify while the appellant testified for his defence without calling any witness. After concluding the trial, the trial Court found the appellant guilty of all the charges, convicted him and sentenced him to death. Aggrieved by the decision of the trial Court, the appellant appealed to the Court of Appeal. After hearing the appeal, the Court of Appeal commuted the death sentence passed on the appellant by the trial Court to 21 years imprisonment because the weapon used during the robbery was not tendered..

Still dissatisfied with the Judgment of the Court of Appeal, the appellant further appealed to the Supreme Court.


ISSUES:
The appeal was determined on the following issues:

A- Whether the confessional statement of the Appellant Exhibit A was properly evaluated by the trial Court and Lower Court in grounding a conviction of guilt on the appellant.
B- Whether the Appellant was properly identified by the Respondent's witnesses?
C - Whether the offences of conspiracy to commit robbery and robbery (six) was proved against the appellant.



DECISION/HELD:
The appeal was dismissed. The judgment of the Court of Appeal substituting the death sentence passed on the appellant to that of 21 years imprisonment was affirmed.


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