Court sentenced Cynthia Osokogu Killers To Death By Hanging… Commends Police For Thorough Investigation

After four years of rigorous trial, Justice Olabisi Akinlade of the Lagos State High Court,pp Igbosere yesterday convicted and sentenced two men Okwumo Nwabufo and Olisaeloka Ezike to death by hanging for the gruesome murder of Cynthia Osokogu, a postgraduate student of Nassarawa State University.

 24-year-old Osokogu, the only daughter of General Frank Osokogu (retd), was murdered on July 22, 2012 at Cosmilla Hotel, Lakeview Estate, Festac Town, in Lagos by her Facebook lover and friends.
Her body was found in a Lagos morgue a month after she was declared missing by her family.

She was a post-graduate student who had a boutique in Nasarawa State until her death.
Police detectives led by the then Area Commander of Festac, Mr. Dan Okoro, were celebrated nationally and internationally when they cracked the case quickly with the aid of technology and arrested four suspects – Okwumo Nwabufo, 33; Olisaeloka Ezike, 23; Orji Osita, 33; and Ezike
 Nonso, 25.

The defendants were charged to court on a six-count charge of conspiracy, murder, stealing, recklessness, negligence and possession of stolen goods.
 Out of the six count charge, name of the of the first defendant, Nwabufo and second defendant, Ezike appeared in count one to four which bordered on conspiracy, murder and stealing while, third defendant, Osita appeared on count five which bordered on recklessness and negligence and forth defendant who is a brother to second defendant,  Nonso was charged for possession of stolen goods.

They were arraigned on February 8, 2013, but they all pleaded not guilty to the charge.
The prosecution opened its case against them by calling 10 witnesses.
The witnesses called include the hotel's receptionists, manager, Victor Igbokwe, a pathologist, Dr. Oladapo Obafunwa, the Investigating Police Officer (IPO), Edo Joseph.

Meanwhile 24 exhibits were tendered by the prosecution to proofed its case beyond reasonable doubt.
All the witnesses told the court their in the investigation that nailed the two convicts.

The four defendants testified for their self to proof innocent but only the third and fourth defendants were fortunate to be set free by court.
Justice Akinlade  in sentencing the first and second defendants to death after founding them guilty of murdering Osokogu by administering Rohypnol Flunitrazepan tablet into her drink, chaining her hands and legs and strangled her to death.

The judge held that she found the convicts guilty of the four count charge preferred against them on the strength of the evidence and exhibits presented, most especially their confessional statement to the police.
The court also sentenced Nwabufo and Ezike to 14 year for conspiracy to murder, three years for conspiracy to commit felony and another three years for stealing.

The court, however, discharged and acquitted Osita, the third defendant person of negligently selling the Rohypnol Flunitrazepan tablets to Ezike, the second defendant without a doctors prescription and without showing due care.

He was freed on the groung that the prosecution failed to prove its case against him beyond reasonable doubt thereby also failing to link Osita to the crime.

 Justice Akinlade also discharged and acquitted the fourth accused person, Nonso, the man who allegedly bought Cynthia's stolen blackberry bold 5.
He was charged for been in possession of a stolen phone, but the court held that he was able to explain how he came into possession of the phone.

The court commended the police for doing a thorough investigation.
The court also commended the first defendant's counsel Victor Okpara for his conduct throughout the trial.

The four men were first arraigned before a Lagos State Magistrate’s court presided over by Mrs O S Aka- Bashorun on September 26, 2012 and later re-arraigned before Justice Olabisi Akinlade on February 8, 2013.

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