On Monday, 7th November, state counsel in the trial of alleged kidnap kingpin, Chukwudimeme Onwuamadike alias Evans, and Victor Aduba, a dismissed army personnel, disclosed that witnesses have refused to testify in court, citing security reasons.
The state counsel, Mr. Yusuf Sule, made the disclosure before an Ikeja Special Offences Court.
According to him, “We have two witnesses but they said they would not be able to come to court to testify, for security reasons. The second witness is the younger brother of the kidnap victim. They said they would prefer to testify over zoom.”
“As a result, the prosecution will like to file an application for a zoom meeting,” Sule said.
Onwuamadike’s counsel, Mr. Oyekunle Falabi, and Aduba’s counsel, Mr. Emmanuel Ochai, did not oppose the prosecution’s request.
Before adjourning the case, Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo expressed dissatisfaction at the slow pace of the trial.
“This is a 2017 case, it is a criminal case, and we ought to have concluded it by now,” she said.
Taiwo adjourned the case until November 29 for a hearing of the prosecution’s application.
The defendants are accused of kidnapping a businessman, Mr. Sylvanus Ahamonu, holding him hostage for at least nine weeks and collecting a ransom of $420,000 from his family.
They are charged on four counts of kidnapping and unlawful possession of firearms.