DPP says drycleaner guilty of killing day old baby

The drycleaner is still remanded in prison.

A Yaba Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday said that a dry cleaner, 35-year-old Aderoju Ojelabi, who allegedly killed her day old baby, had a case to answer in court.

At the resumed hearing of the case, the Magistrate, S.K. Matepo, said: “A murder case has been established against the accused and consequently, her case will be transferred to a court of superior record”.

She said that legal advice from the State Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP) had established a prima facie case of unlawful killing against the accused.

Consequently, Mrs. Matepo ordered that the case file be transferred to the Lagos High Court for trial.

Ms. Ojelabi was first arraigned on December 10, 2012, and charged with the willful abandonment and the murder of her child. At her arraignment, the court failed to take the plea of the accused, but ordered that she be remanded in prison, pending legal advice from the Director of Public Prosecutions.

The Prosecutor, Inspector Chris Takim, had told the court that the accused, who resides at No.1 Honourable St., Odo-Ishuti Road, Egan, a Lagos suburb, committed the offence on November 24, 2012.

He said that the accused had claimed that her baby’s father had abandoned her, while she was pregnant.

Mr. Takim said that after delivery of the baby on November 23, 2012, Ms. Ojelabi decided to get rid of it.

The prosecutor said that the accused, who gave birth at home, put the baby in a sack and proceeded to dump the child in a swamp at the end of Morica Salam St., Egba. He said that the dead baby was later discovered by one Esther Adegbola, who had gone to the area to dispose some garbage.

Mr. Takim had said that the offence committed contravened Section 221 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2011.

The section provides that if found guilty, she could face the death penalty.


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