Clement Adeyi, Osogbo
The killers of the 400-level student of Microbiology Department, Osun State University, Timileyin Sonibare, were Monday, sentenced to death by Justice Kudirat Akano of the Osun State High Court, sitting in Osogbo.
The late Sonibare was murdered on June 26, 2017, in Oke Baale area of Osogbo.
The killers attacked him with a pestle, cut his head and roasted it with intent to use it for ritual.
The convicts who included 19-year-old AbdulRafiu Zakariyahu, Yusuf Kareem, Ayuba Ibrahim, Isiaq Yusuf and AbdulKareem Adeoti, have been arraigned in connection with the killing of Sonibare.
The accused were arraigned on a three-count charge of conspiracy, murder and misconduct with the body of the deceased.
The offences, according to the state prosecution, contravened the provisions of Sections 516, 319(1) and 519 of the Criminal Code Cap 34, Vol. 11, laws of Osun State, 2002.
They, however, pleaded not guilty to the changes.
While passing the judgment, Justice Akano held that with the totality of evidence and statements of the first, second and third accused persons – Zakariyahu, Kareem and Ibrahim – caused the death of the deceased.
Justice Akano held that the first convict,
Zakariyahu, had admitted in his confessional statement that he killed Timileyin, while the prosecution had proved the case against the second and third as accomplices in the killing.
The court said that there was no cogent evidence before the court that the fourth and fifth accused -Yusuf and Adeoti were involved in the killing of the undergraduate.
The court, however, convicted the 5th accused, Adeoti, for aiding the escape of another accomplice, Yahya, who is now on the run, saying “the 5th accused was the godfather of the criminal.
“He did not make effort to report to the police after five days he was aware of the killing. He assisted Yahya to escape,” the court held.
Meanwhile, the court discharged the 4th accused who is the leader of Jafariyah, Yusuf, saying there was no evidence against him before the court.
Counsel to the first convict, A. A. Alayoku, prayed the court to tamper justice with mercy on his client, insisting that he was a first offender and very young. He added that the convict had learnt his lesson since he was in prison.
Counsel to the second, third and fifth convict, Mr. Kazim Badmus, urged the court to be lenient to the convicts. He said the second and third convicts were young and could be useful to the society.
He also told the court that the fifth accused was an elderly person and was depended upon by many children and old people.
He prayed the court to consider that the convicts had spent almost two years in prison.
But, Justice Akano, said the convicts did not show any mercy to the deceased when they killed him.
She thereby sentenced the fifth accused to two years imprisonment.
She, however, said that the jail term should run concurrently.
The court also sentenced the first, second and third convicts to seven years imprisonment for conspiracy, two years for misconduct and also sentenced them to death for murder.