9 July 2001

Nigeria: 3 Charged With Elegbede's Murder

Three of the seven suspected robbers who killed former Chief of naval staff, Rear Admiral Babatunde Elegbede were yesterday formally charged to a Lagos High Court.

Though, they were to be formally arraigned before Justice (Mrs) Olufunmilayo Atilade yesterday, the proceedings stalled as only one suspect, Jamiu Famuyiwa was brought to court by detectives from the federal branch of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), FCID Annex, Adeniji Adele police station. Assistant Police Commissioner (ACP) Amusa Bellow who led the police team, explained that the other two suspects, Kazeem Akangbe and Bode Arabamibi Chuks, who are in the custody of the Lagos State Police Command, were adventently taken to Ikeja Court.

A charge filed by the Office of the Lagos State Director of Public Prosecutor accused the suspects of conspiring on June 19, 1994 to commit armed robbery and that while armed with guns and other dangerous weapons, the accused persons robbed Rear admiral Elegbede of his Mercedes-Benz V-boot car and his service pistol, at Gbagada area of Lagos and thereby committed an offence punishable by firing squad under section 1 (2)(9) of the Robbery and firearms (special provisions) Decree.

Mr. Amusa Beko (ACP), explained that five of the seven man gang were initially arrested by the police shortly after the incident. They were arraigned before the Igbosere Chief Magistrate Court on a holden charge of murder and armed robbery and were subsequently remanded at Ikoyi prisons pending DPP's advice. Four of the suspects late explained from prison in a dare-devil, movie-like operation.

Mr Bello explained that two of the fleeing robbers were shot dead at Ikorodu area of Lagos during a robbery operation, another was shot dead around Berger area of Lagos in yet another operation while one flee to Europe. He further explained that the two other members of the gang that were initially elusive were later arrested by the police and are in the present charge.

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