In a significant ruling, an Osun State High Court in Ile-Ife has sentenced three men to death by hanging for the murder of corps member Mukaila Adebayo during a robbery in Osogbo, the state capital.

The defendants, identified as Jelili Kareem, a herbal seller, Oludayo Oludele, a commercial motorcyclist, and Muyiwa Awodeji, an electrician, were convicted for their involvement in the January 28, 2020 incident in the Omo West Area of Osogbo.

During the robbery, Adebayo, who was serving his mandatory youth service, was reportedly robbed of his mobile phone, recharge cards, and other belongings before being fatally shot.

The crimes committed were in violation of Sections 316, 319, and 324 of the Criminal Code Law, Cap.34, Vol. 2, Laws of Osun State, 2002.

The trial commenced on October 8, 2020, with all defendants pleading not guilty to charges of conspiracy, armed robbery, and murder.

Also arraigned was Buliaminu Anifowose, a vulcanizer accused of purchasing recharge cards stolen during the incident.

During the proceedings, the court heard testimonies from the deceased’s daughter, a pathologist who conducted the autopsy, the Investigative Police Officer, and a sibling of Adebayo, all supporting the prosecution’s case. Prosecutor Mr. Muyiwa Ogunleye urged the court to apply the law rigorously against the defendants, citing strong evidence presented.

However, defense counsels Folashade Ipede Suleiman Akano and Shina Olaniyan argued that the prosecution failed to sufficiently prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

Justice Adedapo Adeniji, in delivering the verdict, affirmed that the prosecution had established the defendants’ culpability in the crime of murder and armed robbery.

He sentenced Kareem, Oludele, and Awodeji to death by hanging, while Anifowose was discharged.

The judgment underscores the judicial system’s commitment to justice and serves as a solemn reminder of the consequences of violent crimes in society.