Illegible statements served on the defence counsels on Tuesday stalled the trial of Chidinma Ojukwu, who was accused of killing Usifo Ataga, CEO of Super TV, at a Lagos High Court in Tafawa Balewa Square (TBS).
NAN reports that the defence counsels complained that the statements contained in the proof of evidence served on them were all illegible and that the audio interviews of the defendants were also inaudible.
They stated that the defendants had a right to clearer statements and audible video interviews as it would enable them to prepare their defence adequately.
Justice Yetunde Adesanya, in her ruling, directed the Lagos State Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) to provide clearer statements and audible copies of the interviews to all the defence counsels before the end of the day.
Adesanya further adjourned the matter to Nov. 11, 15, 16, 17, 26 and 30 for trial.
Earlier, Mrs A.O. Adeyemi had entered an appearance for the prosecution from the DPP, while Mr Onwuka Egbu, Mr Babatunde Busari and Mr A.O. Ogunsanya had appeared for the first to third defendants respectively.
Adeyemi told the court that she had two witnesses in court and was ready to begin the trial, but Egwu informed the court that he had a pending application before the court that was ripe for hearing.
He said that in his application, he was praying for more legible statements, as the ones contained in the proof of evidence the prosecution served him were illegible.
Counsel to the second defendant, Busari, aligned with the submission of the first defence counsel and further complained that the video recordings of the interviews were not served on him.
On his part, counsel to the third defendant, Ogunsanya, from the Office of the Public Defender (OPD), told the court that the video interviews of the defendants that were served on him were not audible.
He aligned with previous submissions that the statements he was served were also not clear.
The defence counsels submitted that they needed all these documents to enable them to prepare for the trial adequately.
Adeyemi told the court that she would send soft copies of all the proof of evidence to each defence counsels’ email before the end of the day.
Recall that the three defendants were arraigned on Oct. 12, on a nine-count charge preferred against them by the Lagos State Government.
They had allegedly murdered the Chief Executive Officer of Super TV, Micheal Usifo Ataga.
The first two defendants, Chidinma Ojukwu and Adedapo Quadri are facing the first eight counts on the charge bordering on conspiracy, murder, stabbing, forgery, making of bank statements and stealing.
The third defendant, who is the first defendant’s sister, Chioma Egbuchu, is facing the ninth count charge of stealing iPhone 7, phone, belonging to the late Ataga.
In the charge, the defendants were alleged to have conspired amongst themselves and murdered Ataga on June 15, 2021, by stabbing him severally with a knife on his neck and chest.
The incident took place at No. 19, Adewale Oshin Street, Lekki Phase 1, Lagos.
The duo was also accused of committing forgery by procuring and making bank account statements purported to have been made by the deceased.
They were also alleged to have forged United Bank of Africa account statement of one Mary from June 1, 2021, an international passport and a driver’s license in Chidinma’s name
Google appeals $2.8bn shopping fine at EU court
Google on Thursday appealed an EU court decision to uphold the bloc’s 2.4-billion-euro ($2.8-billion) fine for abusing its search engine dominance.
The tech giant said it would go to the European Court of Justice, the EU’s highest court, after the General Court confirmed in November a decision by the European Commission in 2017.
At the time, the fine was the European Union’s biggest ever. But it was later exceeded by a 4.3-billion-euro fine against Google over its Android smartphone operating system.
“After careful consideration, we have decided to appeal the General Court’s decision because we feel there are areas that require legal clarification from the European Court of Justice,” a short statement by the company said.
The case centres on Google’s shopping service and is one of three against the search engine giant currently moving through the EU’s drawn-out appeals system.
The new appeal could take up to two years to reach an outcome, stretching the case out to well more than a decade after the commission launched its investigation in 2010.
The court confirmation on Google Shopping was a win for the EU’s anti-trust supremo Margrethe Vestager, who burst onto the scene in Brussels by scrapping her predecessor’s more conciliatory approach to the US internet giant.
Vestager had lost in the same court in a different major case, against Apple and Ireland, in which her teams had ordered the iPhone maker to repay 13 billion euros plus interest to the Irish taxpayer. The EU has appealed that ruling.
The fine for Google came after seven years of investigation launched by complaints from other price-comparison services that saw traffic plummet against Google Shopping.
NSCDC busts recharge card specialist fraudsters in Osun
By Olajide Idowu
Two suspects, Adeyemo Mufutau, 26, and Oladiji Hezekiah, 27, have been arrested in Osogbo, Osun State for engaging in use of recharge cards to dupe people while pretending to be herbalists.
The suspects were arrested by operatives of Osun Command of Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC).
While parading the suspect, Osun NSCDC Commandant, Mr Emmanuel Ocheja, explained how the herbalists initiated their fraudulent activities by calling members of the public on their phones, and pretending as old men/herbalists to defraud them.
“They will send fake recharge cards to people, and then call the receiver that the person should help return the cards, and afterwards introduce one ‘baba’ ( an old man)/ or a herbalist as the person intending to send the recharge cards to his son.
“They will say the ‘baba’ wants to specially thank anybody who sends the recharge cards back to them.
“During the process, the suspects would introduce themselves as old men/herbalists who wanted to reciprocate the kind gesture of those that had sent back the recharge cards to them.
”The suspects would say they wanted to help solve the problems of their unsuspecting members of the public ,” he said.
The commandant added that the suspects had confessed to the crime and would be charged to court.
Similarly, Ocheja said that two other suspects were arrested on Monday at a mining site within Ita Obi Community of Ilesa, for mining illegally while three others were also arrested on Wednesdsy for dealing illegally in petroleum products.
He said one Zainab Afeez was also arrested for allegedly assaulting and pouring hot water on her 11-year old biological daughter, while one Abdulrahman Ibrahim was arrested in connection with a stolen Toyota Camry, 1999 model, in Osogbo but recovered in Kano.
Ocheja said that all the suspects would be charged to court after the completion of investigations into their matters. (NAN) (www.nannews.ng)