Paul Osuyi, Asaba
Three persons have been sentenced to death by hanging by a Delta State High Court sitting at Issele-Uku for the murder of 75-year old Diokpa Felix Biose in 2014. The deceased was an uncle of the Minister of State for Petroleum, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu.
The septuagenarian farmer was brutally murdered in his farm on June 9, 2014 at Onicha-Ugbo in Aniocha North Local Government Area while his Kia Rio car was taken away.
The convicts are 32-year-old driver, Sunday Luka; 37-year-old Danjuma Kaika and 33-year-old Luka Agu, who all claimed to be from Nassarawa State. They were said to be labourers in Biose’s farm.
They faced a four-count charge bordering on conspiracy to commit murder under section 324 of the Criminal Code Cap C21, Volume 1 Laws of Delta State, 2006; murder under section 319(1); conspiracy to commit armed robbery contrary to section 6(b) and punishable under section 1(2)(a) of the Robbery and Firearms (Special Provision) Act Cap R11, Volume 14 Laws of the Federation, 2004; and the substantive offence of murder under Section 1(2)(a) of the Robbery and Firearms Act.
The court presided over by Justice C.I. Ogisi, while handing down the sentence, said the punishment for the offence was mandatory and does not have the discretionary power to mitigate the death sentence.
Justice Ogisi, who sentenced the first and second accused persons on all four counts, however, discharged the third accused person on count two and four but was sentenced on count one and three.
Justice Ogisi held that the court agreed with the submission of the prosecution counsel, Pollen Ezeana-Ejiofor, who urged the court to accordingly convict the defendants as it proved the case beyond all reasonable doubt.
“I am persuaded that the third accused person conspired with the first and second but I am also persuaded that the third accused person did not take part in the murder of Felix Biose on the June 9, 2014,” the court held.
Prosecution had through witnesses told the court that on June 9, 2014, one Pa Felix Biose, aged 75 years, was brutally murdered in his farm situated along Onicha-Ugbo/Issele-Uku Road by unknown persons, who investigations later revealed to be the three accused persons.