- Sowemimo v. State.
- ₦ 200
Sowemimo v. State.
OTUNBA F. E. SOWEMIMO
SUPREME COURT OF
UTHMAN MOHAMMED, JSC (
AKINTOLA OLUFEMI EJIWUNMI, JSC
NIKI TOBI, JSC
DAHIRU MUSDAPHER, JSC
IGNATIUS C. PATS-ACHOLONU, JSC ( Read the Lead Judgment )
FRIDAY, 23RD APRIL, 2004
APPEAL - Cross-appeal - Need for appellant to obtain leave of court
before filing - Effect of failure to do so
COURT - Expert evidence - When contradictory - Attitude of court thereto
CRIMINAL LAW AND PROCEDURE - Accused unequivocally pinned to locus in
quo by witness(es) - Whether can avail himself of the defence of alibi
CRIMINAL LAW AND PROCEDURE - Death - When alleged to be from an act of
a person - Need to link with personâ€™s act
CRIMINAL LAW AND PROCEDURE - Defence of alibi - Need for to be raised
at an earliest opportunity
CRIMINAL LAW AND PROCEDURE - Defence of alibi - When not raised at the earliest opportunity -
CRIMINAL LAW AND PROCEDURE - Manslaughter - Conviction for Need to
point beyond reasonable doubt to the accused
CRIMINAL LAW AND PROCEDURE - Medical evidence - When discredited - Whether accused can be
convicted for manslaughter thereon
EVIDENCE - Expert evidence - When contradictory in nature - Whether
court bound by it
EVIDENCE - Expert evidence - Qualifications before admittance by the
EVIDENCE - Expert evidence - Whether in the instant case qualified as
EVIDENCE - Medical evidence - When discredited - Whether accused can be
convicted for manslaughter
NOTABLE PRONOUNCEMENT on the impropriety of a citizen taking the law
into his hands
WORDS AND PHRASES - â€˜Alibiâ€™ - Meaning of
Whether the defence of alibi has been proved.
Whether in all cases the prosecution must prove and
tender as exhibits such items as knife, cutlass, axe or other heavily weighted
objects before an intention to kill can be proved, and
Whether lack of knowledge of the victimâ€™s state of
health or ignorance that torture could kill is a mitigating circumstance in a
charge of murder.
Tunde Oredipe, the deceased, was
accused of having a share of stolen money by Ayo-Ola, the son of the 1st
appellant. The evidence is that the deceased was beaten by the three accused
persons with plastic hose pipe, electric cable and horsetail. The accused
persons took him to the Ikeja General Hospital after the beating for treatment.
Tunde Oredipe did not survive. He died in the hospital.
The three accused persons were
charged with murder of Tunde Oredipe. The trial Judge convicted them for the
offence and sentenced them to death. The Court of Appeal reduced the conviction
to manslaughter. The 1st and 2nd appellants were sentenced to ten years and
seven years imprisonment, respectively. Dissatisfied, the appellants have now
appealed to the Supreme Court.
filed a cross-appeal on the reduction of murder to manslaughter. The appeal was
struck out on the ground that it was filed without leave of either the Court of
Appeal or the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court was left to consider the issues
in the main appeal.