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Alleged Gang-Rape: Court Takes Major Decision On Three Unilag Students

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Justice Abiola Soladoye of an Ikeja Domestic Violence and Sexual Offences Court has refused the bail application of three students of the University of Lagos (UNILAG) accused of gang-raping a fellow student.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Justice Soladoye ruled on Monday that due to the grievous nature of the offence, the court using its discretionary powers will deny the students bail.

She also stated there were no compelling nor exceptional circumstances provided in their applications that will warrant bail being granted to them.

“The applicants are denied bail and this honourable court shall give this case accelerated hearing,” Justice Soladoye said.

The students: Moboluwaji Omowole 19, Chuka Chukwu 19 and Peace Nwankama 19, face a three-count charge of defilement of a child, permitting the defilement of a child in a premises and procuration.

On April 18, the bail application of a co-defendant, James Aguedo, a 20-year-old student of Babcock University, was also denied by the court because he did not provide compelling circumstances to warrant bail being granted to him.

The ruling on the bail application of another co-defendant, 20-year-old Josephine Osemeka, will hold on May 2.

NAN reports that Omowole, Chukwu, Nwankama, Osemeka and Aguedo are facing a three-count charge of defilement of a child, permitting the defilement of a child in a premises and procuration.

They, however, denied the charge.

The complainant had on Feb. 26 testified in court that she was lured by Nwankama who was her roommate to High Rise, a staff quarters hostel at UNILAG.

She said she was gang-raped at High Rise by eight students and the sexual assault was videotaped.

According to her, she was also blackmailed with the video and further gang-raped on other occasions by the defendants and their accomplices who are now at large.

The five students have been remanded at the Kirikiri Prisons since Feb. 26, the day they were arraigned for the alleged offences.

Justice Soladoye adjourned the case until May 2 for trial.

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