Court discharges accused in Kidnap Case in Makurdi

COURT DISCHARGES, ACQUITS CASE AGAINST CHAIRMAN TAP GROUP OF COMPANIES. File Picture of the Frontage of a Court showing the Lady Justice

The Benue State High court sitting in Makurdi, the state capital has discharged and acquitted suspects in  an alleged case of kidnapping levelled against the chairman, TAP Group of Companies, Terwase Paul and one Mr. Mson Yaasa.

The Case which was brought against the defendants by the Nigerian Police for an alleged attempt to kidnap the Bursar of Joseph Saawuan Tarka University of Agriculture Makurdi before Justice Maurice Ahemba Ikpambes was dismissed accordingly for lacking in merit.

Advertisement

The prosecuting counsel called four witnesses, PW1, PW2, PW3 and PW4 to back up his claim against the defendant and documentary evidence tendered but were rejected for non compliance with section 19/2 of state administration of criminal justice law 2019.

In determining the main issue submitted by counsels, the judge held that is important to reproduced section 345/3 of the state administration of criminal justice law 2019

Advertisement

The court held that it should be noted that prima facie Case is not a proof which come later when the court finds out whether the defendant is guilty or not.
The evidence showing prima facie Case is such that if “uncontradicted” and if “Believe” it will be sufficient enough to prove a case against the defendants.

The Court was surprised that the witness who broke the news of the allege plans to kidnap the Bursar does not know the first Defendant who was Masterminding the plans to execute the kidnapping neither could he prove material involvement of the first Defendant aside hearing that the first defendant has sent one hundred thousand naira and one thousand five hundred naira to Chula the POS operator.

Advertisement

From Cross examination The court wonders whether the police arrested the defendants at unnamed filling station or at HalleyDays hotel in Makurdi.

The PW1 denied knowledge of the phone number use to transact kidnapping business with the first Defendant and the police also failed to check with the network operators the exchange of communication between PW1 and the first defendant.

Advertisement

The court also held that the Police did not summon courage to bring Chula in who’s POS was used to send and receive money by PW1 and the 1st Defendant, also the Police did not investigate the record of the POS operator with the bank to find out how monies were sent and received by PW1 if actually it was true confessions.

The court held therefore that the police didn’t show thorough evidence to establish a prima facie Case against the defendant for failing to do their job thoroughly.

Advertisement

PW1 even denied knowing PW2 police investigator inspector Odugbo attached to operation Zenda JTF. PW2 stated that on the 21st day of May 2021 he was on Duty at operation Zenda JTF headquarters when inspector Achaku came with PW1 and said the defendant were planning kidnapping and on the directives of CSP. Gberindyer they mobilize and arrested the defendant.

PW2 also denied meeting the Bursar which he was investigating his case.

Advertisement

The busrar also denied any form of threat to release money or be kidnapped. PW3 also denied that the Bursar of Joseph saawuan Tarka University Makurdi was threatened all he Said was that, it was CSP Gberindyer that went to the university to break the news to the Bursar that they were plans to kidnap him.

While delivering the judgment, Justice Ikpambese held that “Having thoroughly examine the evidence given by PW1, PW2, PW3 and PW4 apart from being contradictory, Conflicting they have been so challenged that no reasonable tribunal will use to convict anyone”.

Advertisement

“The police investigated the case and PW2 and PW3 testified at their instance and it shows that they conspire with PW1 but still failed to prove their Case.

” I have no doubt in my mind that the whole case is masterminded by the police, and a cry of Wolf Wolf by the police should not be taken seriously, PW1, PW2 and PW3 Story which they gave is contradictory and does not hold water to convict the defendants.

Advertisement

“On the second charge of threat to hostage taking it is clearly denied by the Bursar who should have given evidence to show that he was threatened by the defendant. The court held that the man was not threaten at all but the police carried that news.

“The Police has failed to prove their case of prima facie against the defendant and the court without anything to hold hands on discharge the defendants on merits.

Advertisement

The Judge further warned that media trial of suspects should be discouraged.

Reacting shortly after the judgment was delivered, Mr. Terwase Agbem dedicated his discharge to God and youths who are trying to make earns meet but are being frustrated by some forces of the society.

Advertisement

leave a reply