After over five years of legal battles, a Lagos State High Court sitting in Ikeja has sentenced the dethroned Baale of Shangisha in Magodo, Mutiu Ogundare, and his brother, to 15 years imprisonment for staging his own kidnap in the state.
Ogundare alongside his brother, Opeyemi Mohammed, were convicted by the court on a three-count charge, bordering on conspiracy and fake kidnapping.
Both men were arrested alongside Baale’s wife, Abolanle, who was discharged and acquitted after it was proven that she had no link to how both men faked the chief’s abduction in the state.
Justice Hakeem Oshodi, who gave the ruling on Tuesday, sentenced the dethroned Baale and his brother to 10 years jail term on the first count brought against them by the state government without an option of fine.
On the second count, Justice Oshodi sentenced the duo to one year imprisonment with an option of N200,000 fine and count three to 15 years without an option of fine from both.
The judgement came over five years after Ogundare staged his abduction and directed his brother to raise the alarm, alerting residents of the dethroned Baale’s kidnap in the state.
After several hours of investigations, the Lagos police command discovered that the act was staged by the brother to raise money for themselves.
According to the judge, I have considered the allocutus of the defence counsels. However, it is in the view of this court that the defendants showed no remorse during the trial.
“In fact, the first defendant tried to buy his way out of the court. A lesson has to be thought to serve as a deterrent to others.
“The defendants are hereby sentenced to 10 years to count one without an option of fine, one year to count two with an option of N200,000, and 15 years to count three without an option of fine. The sentencing shall run concurrently from the day they had been arrested,” Oshodi added.
Earlier, the counsel to the first defendant, Dr. Muniz Banire, in his allocutus on June 15 prayed to the court to temper Justice with mercy.
Banire, who was represented Olarewaju Ajanaku, said that the convict had turned a new leaf and he did not think through his action when he committed the offences five years ago.
The second defence counsel, Dr. Olayinka Owoeye, also in his allocutus had prayed the court to temper justice with mercy adding that the convict had learnt his lessons.
The state prosecutor, Jubril Kareem, however, urged the court to apply the provisions of law to sentence the convict.