Court remands Lagos estate residents’ association president

The president of 1004 Estate Residents Association, Lagos, Tayo Soetan, and three others charged with felony offences have been remanded in prison on the orders of an Igbosere Magistrate Court, pending when they are able to perfect the bail conditions admitted to them.

Mr. Soetan, alongside Bosun Sosanya, 47, and a 41 year-old lawyer, Adebayo Ademiluyi, Friday Alika, 48, and Abubakar Audu, 28, were arraigned before the court on offences bordering on felony, conspiracy, unlawful invasion and conduct likely to breach public peace.

The offences, according to the prosecutor, Paul Ogwuba, a Superintendent of Police, are contrary to sections 411, 52, and 166(d) (b) of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State of Nigeria, 2015.

They had all pleaded not guilty to all the offences.

All five defendants and others at large were also alleged to have an intent to cause a breakdown of law and order and conduct themselves in a manner likely to cause the breach of peace, by forcibly entering the office of Managing Director of 1004 Estate, Samuel Ukpong.

The police, in a charge marked G/13/2017, filed before the court on Tuesday, alleged that all the five defendants had sometimes on December 5, 2015, conspired among themselves to commit a felony by forcibly entering the office Managing Director of 1004 Estate Limited, Mr. Ukpong, and taking over the management of the Estate from him, and disrupting the smooth administration of the estate.

The five defendants and others at large were also alleged with an intent to cause a breakdown of law and order and conduct themselves in a manner likely to cause the breach of peace, by forcibly entered the office of Managing Director of 1004 Estate, Mr. Ukpong.

Upon their not guilty plea, the lawyer, to the first defendant, Kingsley Ajogun, urged the court to admit their clients bail on self-recognisance.

He said: “the first defendant was invited by the police for interview before he was brought to court for arraignment. He is a Deputy Managing Director of Halogen Security.

“I urged the court to admit him bail on self-recognisance”.

In the same vein, lawyer to the second, third, fourth and fifth defendants, Promise Asipo, urged the court to grant all his clients bail on the same self-recognisance.

Mr. Asipo told the court that the second defendant a Managing Director of Cashlink Limited Company, who has been honouring Police invitations. While he said the third defendant is a legal practitioner, whose law firm name bear Adebayo Admiluyi and Co., and have his office at 200, Igbosere road.

He said the fourth and fifth defendants is an Operation Manager, and a security operative with a security outfit names Tom Salem Integrated Services Limited, situated at 1004 Estate, Victoria Island, Lagos.

He said if his client are granted bail on self-recognisance, they will not jump bail.

In response, the prosecutor, Mr. Ogwuba, who was from the Office of Inspector-General of Police (IGP), urged the court to take judicial notice that the matter was a contentious one. And that if the defendants are to be admitted to bail, it should be with the conditions that will ensure their attendance in court.

However, the presiding Chief magistrate, W. B. Balogun, said he would not grant the third defendant, Adebayo Ademiluyi, bail on self-recognisance because he cannot easily be apprehended if he jumps bail.

The court ordered the lawyer to write a letter and attach a copy of his Bar certificate, complimentary card and passport photograph.

The other defendants were admitted to bail in the sum of N5 million with two sureties in the like sum.

Mr. Balogun ordered that the accused persons be remanded in Prison’s custody pending when they fulfil the bail conditions. While the adjourned till April 20, for trial.

It was gathered that that the residents of 1004 Estate, under the aegis of Home Owners and Residents Association (HOMA) recently sacked a maintenance committee led by Mr. Soetan.

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