Commercial driver sentenced to life imprisonment for raping 16-year-old female passenger in Ekiti

An Ekiti State High Court on Monday, October 31, sentenced a 42-year-old man, Ilesanmi Adewale, to life imprisonment, for raping a 16-year-old girl in Isan Ekiti, in the Oye Local Government Area of the state.

The police said the commercial bus driver committed the offence on Feb. 13, 2021 at Isan Ekiti, within the jurisdiction of the court when he raped the girl, contrary to the provisions of Section 31(2) of the Child’s Right Law, Cap. C7, Laws of Ekiti State, 2012. In her statement to the police, the victim said Adewale raped her inside a bush after threatening to kill her with cutlass.

“My father sent me to Iludun Ekiti from Isan Ekiti to bring his ATM card and the N8,000 he kept at home. On my way back to Isan, I boarded a commercial driver’s car; I was alone with him in the car. He first touched my breast and I cautioned him to stop it,” she narrated.

“On getting to a bush between Isan and Iludun, when he stopped the car, I opened the door and ran away. He pursued, caught me and carried me on his shoulder to a nearby bush. He threatened to kill me with the cutlass in his hand if I refuse to cooperate. He removed my pants and forcibly had sexual intercourse with me.

I bit his hands and tore his clothes as I cried, but he refused to leave me. “Then, he collected my father’s ATM card and N8,000 from me. When he returned them to me, he begged me not to tell my father. But as I got back to the road, I saw my father on a motorcycle.

I narrated what happened to him; the driver was arrested and later taken to a police station.” The prosecutor, Folashade Alli, called three witnesses and tendered the victim’s pants, a cutlass, a medical report and the defendant’s statements, among others, as exhibits. The defendant spoke through his counsel T.J. Omidoyin and called no witnesses. Delivering judgement, Justice Monisola Abodunde, said,

“The crime of rape of a minor is assuming a frightening dimension in this jurisdiction. I cannot contradict the terms imposed by the law.

The mandatory provision is that once a defendant is convicted of rape, he is liable to imprisonment for life. “Based on the above reasoning and in strict adherence with the provisions of the law, I have no alternative than to sentence the defendant to life imprisonment and I so hold,” the judge ruled.

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