THE prime suspect in the killing of Lagos-based pregnant lawyer, Mrs Omobolanle Raheem, an Assistant Superintendent of Police, Drambi Vandi, was arraigned, yesterday, before a Lagos High Court, sitting at the Tafawa Balewa Square, TBS, for murder.
In a one-count charge filed before the court, the Lagos State Government alleged that Vandi shot and killed Mrs Raheem in the Ajah area of the state, on December 25, 2022.
The offence, according to the state, is contrary to Section 223 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.
After the charge was read in court, Vandi pleaded not guilty to the allegation.
Lagos State Attorney-General, Moyosore Onigbanjo, who is prosecuting the case, subsequently told the court that the state was ready to commence trial and that they have a witness in court.
The defence counsel, Mr Adetokunbo Odutola, who did not oppose the application, called for an accelerated hearing.
Thereafter, a Police Inspector, Matthew Ameh was invited to the witness box.
In his testimony, he told the court that his team, including the defendant, was deployed to Ajah under a bridge where they were conducting a stop and search.
He told the court that his team tried to stop the deceased’s car which is an unregistered vehicle but that the driver didn’t stop and Vandi fired at the car.
Trial judge, Justice Ibironke Harrison ordered an accelerated hearing in the matter and adjourned till January 25 and 26, 2023, for cross-examination and continuation of trial.
The arraignment, which was scheduled for 9 a.m., was delayed until about 11 a.m., when Vandi’s counsel, Odutola arrived.
Recall that Vandi was arrested and arraigned before Chief Magistrate C. Adedayo on December 30, 2022, a day after the Police Service Commission, PSC, approved his (Vandi) suspension.
The Magistrate ordered that Vandi be remanded at the Ikoyi prison pending advice of the Lagos State Director of Public Prosecutions.
Slain lawyer for burial today
Meanwhile, the remains of Bolanle Raheem would be interred today.
A Service of Songs was held in her honour, yesterday, at the Olive Tree Parish of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, Banana Island area of Lagos State, with friends and relatives in attendance.
The Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Charles Ajiboye, disclosed, weekend, plans by Raheem’s family for her burial.
Members of the NBA, also paid tributes to their female colleagues, at the Dining Hall of the Nigerian Law School, Lagos Campus.
The event tagged: ‘Auroral Tributes to Mrs Bolanle Raheem by NBA’, was held yesterday.
“The NBA, through its Lagos branch, humbly requests tributes to honour our late colleague, who was slain on December 25, 2022.”