By Sunmola Olowookere
It was wailing galore at An Akure High Court on Tuesday as a High Judge sentenced four siblings to death for murder and kidnapping.
The Judge, Justice A. O. Odusola who pronounced the judgement ordered that they be hanged until life is snuffed out of them for their criminal conduct.
Those to be hanged are Olumide Orogbemi, Sunday Orogbemi, Kehinde Orogbemi and Omosuyi Orogbemi.
As soon as the judge pronounced his verdict, relations of the convicts burst into tears, wailing uncontrollably while grief overwhelmed the convicted siblings.
Their father, Earnest Orogbemi, an octogenarian obviously ignorant of the judge’s pronouncement read in English language who remained composed however escaped the hang man’s noose as he was discharged and acquitted.
The six men including another sibling of the convicts, Idowu Orogbemi, who died before the conclusion of the trial, were arraigned on a two-count charge of kidnapping and murder.
According to the prosecution, the men had abducted one Dada Olusola in a bus and took him to a bush in Zion over a land dispute between the two families.
During the incident, the court heard that a woman identified as Margaret Jimi, who was seven months pregnant died in the siege mounted by the accused in desperate attempt to kidnap the complainants.
In his judgement, Justice A.O Odusola observed that the testimonies of the prosecution witnesses tallied and that the two parties, the complainants and the defendants were very familiar with each other and grew up together in the same area.
He said that the prosecution had closed its case after calling six witnesses while the defence opened by calling the defendants as witnesses.
All the defendants had raised issues of alibi of which Justice Odusola observed that they could not substantiate in their giving of evidence before the court.
He said that all of them took to hiding as they were all arrested at different hotels after the commission of the crime.
After considering all the evidence before him such as the autopsy of the dead woman who was riddled with bullets, the medical report of the abductee and the various statements, the judge decided that there were indeed a kidnapping and murder.
He also said that the husband of the deceased testified that he saw four of the defendants wielding guns in his compound before they started shooting at his house.
He stated that the prosecution had proven its case against the defendants beyond all reasonable doubt.