Alleged Sexual Molestation: Baba Ijesha To Face Five-Charge Trial, Risks Life Imprisonment
Lagos State Government has advised the state Police Command to charge Nollywood actor, Olanrewaju James, also known as Baba Ijesha, to court with five offences over allegation of sexually abusing 14-year-old girl.
Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Moyosore Onigbanjo, in a statement on Tuesday said Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP) issued legal advice on that a prima facie case has been disclosed against the Yoruba actor.
Prima facie case is a cause of action or defense that is sufficiently established by a party’s evidence to justify a verdict in his or her favor, provided such evidence is not rebutted by the other party.
According to the legal advice, he should be charged under the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.
The legal advice comes after Lagos commissioner of police, Hakeem Odumosu said the police command await recommendation from DPP amid claims of Baba Ijesha receiving bail.
The advice was given by DPP which revealed that Baba Ijesha may be sentenced to life imprisonment if found guilty in court.
The statement reads;
It would be recalled that the Nigeria Police Force arrested Mr. Olanrewaju James (also referred to as Baba Ijesha) on account of various sexual abuse allegations. On the 30th of April, 2021, the Police forwarded the case file of COP v Olanrewaju James to the Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP) for legal advise.
After due consideration of the facts in the case file, the Directorate of Public Prosecutions issued legal advise on the 4th of May, 2021, which is to the effect that a prima facie case has been disclosed against Mr. Olanrewaju James and recommended he be charged under the following provisions of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015:
Section 135, Indecent Treatment of a child- punishable by 7 years imprisonment,
Section 137- Defilement of a Child-, punishable by life imprisonment,
Section 261- Sexual Assault by Penetration- punishable by life imprisonment,
Section 262- Attempted Sexual Assault by Penetration, punishable by 14 years imprisonment and
Section 263, Sexual Assault-punishable by 3 years imprisonment.
Whilst the State would ensure that Mr. Olanrewaju James’s rights as enshrined in the Constitution are upheld, the Ministry of Justice would not relent in its efforts in ensuring that whoever sexually abuses any resident of Lagos State is speedily brought to book. It is instructive to note that the Lagos State Ministry of Justice has been consistent in its efforts in protecting the vulnerable in our society and since the establishment of the Domestic and Sexual Violence Response Team in 2014, it has till date prosecuted over 800 cases of Sexual and Domestic offenses.
The Attorney-General hereby assures Lagosians and indeed Nigerians that in accordance with the DPP’s advise, charges would be filed accordingly.