A Lagos State High Court in Ikeja has sentenced a 37-year-old driver, Femi Tonade, to 12 years’ imprisonment for defiling a 14-year-old housekeeper.
According to the prosecution team, led by Mrs. A.B. Awosika, Tonade committed the offence on December 1, 2015, at Iju-Ishaga, Lagos.
Awosika said the convict and his employer were outside, while the complainant was in the building.
“The convict crept upstairs without his employer’s knowledge, physically restrained the housekeeper and had forceful carnal knowledge of her,” she said.
She said that the complainant confided in her employer about the defilement the following day, and it was reported to the authorities.
The prosecutor added that medical examinations confirmed that the housekeeper was defiled.
According to her, the offence violated Section 137 of the Criminal Code of Lagos State.
Counsel for the convict, Mrs. Olabimpe Bamboye, pleaded with the court to temper justice with mercy.
“My Lord, please temper justice with mercy. The defendant is a driver; he has a family and an aged father whom he takes care of.
“Ever since he has been in custody, the defendant has not been able to take care of his family,” she said.
Justice Kudirat Jose granted the request of the defendant by reducing the jail term from life imprisonment to 12 years.
While pronouncing her judgement, she said, “It is easy to plead for people, but it is easier for people to offend. You just don’t see a child and decide to have forceful carnal knowledge of her.
“Section 137 of the Criminal Law of Lagos recommends a term of life in prison for the offence of defilement.
“However, after listening to your allocutus, the court is going to be lenient with the defendant and sentence him to 12 years in prison.
“The sentence will commence from the first day he was incarcerated.”
She held that the evidence of the minor against the defendant was believable and that the prosecution proved its case beyond doubt.