20 February 2013

Nigeria: I Was Tortured to Confess, Says Rape Suspect

Gusau — Ugochukwu Awuche, who is standing trial at the Zamfara State High Court on a one count charge of rape has told the court that he was tortured by the police to confess that he attempted to rape a nine year old girl in his shop.

Awuche said this during the cross -examination of the petitioner's witness. According to the witnesses, Awuche on August 22, 2010, attempted to rape a nine year old girl along Gidan Sambo in Gusau. But when the Attorney General of the state, Barrister Garba Gajam Muhammad, who led the prosecution team attempted to tender the confessional statement of the accused, the defence counsel, Barrister Gambo Magaji, objected to the admissibility of the statement on the ground that his client was forced to confess.

After argument by both parties, the judge, justice Kulu Aliyu, ordered that there should be trial within trial to ascertain if the accused was tortured as claimed by his counsel.

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