Suleiman Usman, a father, was sentenced to life in prison by a Lagos State Sexual Offenses and Domestic Violence Court for defiling his 8-year-old daughter.
On Tuesday, May 30, 2023, the trial judge, Justice Rahman Oshodi, sentenced Usman to life in prison after he was found guilty of the accusation brought against him by the Lagos State government.
Usman was charged on two charges of defilement of his two daughters, ages 8 and 5, in their home at No. 2 Bale Street, Onisewo area of Apapa in Lagos.
The state said that the offences violate the provisions of Section 137 of the Lagos State Criminal Law 2015.
He had, however, pled not guilty to the two counts of accusation when he was arraigned.
Usman was first charged before Justice Sybil Nwaka in October 2019 before the judge was elevated to the Court of Appeal and the case file was sent to Justice Oshodi’s court, where he was re-charged on two counts.
During the trial, the prosecution called four witnesses, including the first survivor, an eight-year-old girl, the Investigative Police Officer (IPO), the defendant’s wife (the survivors’ mother), and a medical doctor from the Mirabel Centre.
After the prosecution case concludes, the defence case begins. Three witnesses, including the defendant, testified in court.
However, Justice Oshodi acquitted the defendant on the second charge.
The court ruled that the prosecution failed to prove the defendant’s second accusation since the second survivor did not testify about her defilement.
On count one, the court decided that the first survivor’s testimony supported the medical doctor’s. In sentencing, the father to life imprisonment, Justice Oshodi stated that he weighed the elements of the offences, the confessional testimony, circumstantial evidence, and the eyewitness account.
He said, “Our society is prone to sexual abuse, sexual crime against children is so prevalent. Our laws in Lagos have zero tolerance for your gang of paedophiles; that is not acceptable. In your case, the survivor is your daughter. You put your penis in her virginal and her anus, the survivor was 8 years at the time because she had excruciating pain.
“You are hereby convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment,” the court ruled.