Nigeria: Prosecution Closes Case in Dane Accused of Killing Nigerian Wife

26 September 2019

The Lagos State government said it has concluded its evidence presentation in the ongoing trial of a Dane, Peter Nelson, charged with killing his wife, Zainab, and their daughter, Petra.

Zainab, 37, and Petra, 3, were allegedly murdered by Mr Nielsen at their Banana Island home in Ikoyi, Lagos, on April 5, 2018.

Zainab was a Nigerian musician popularly known as Alizee.

According to the prosecution, the offence was committed at about 3.45 a.m.

Mr Nelson, who is standing trial before a judge, Okikiolu Ighile, sitting in Igbosere Division of the Lagos High Court is being prosecuted by the state for an alleged murder.

The prosecution led by Titilayo Shitta Bey (Solicitor General and Permanent Secretary, of the Lagos State Ministry of Justice) concluded their case at the resumed hearing on Friday.

The defendant's team lead by Olasupo Shasore had taken the last prosecution witness Idem Richard Somiari on cross extermination.

The state's ninth witness was also examined and cross-examined for over three days.

The prosecution called nine witnesses and closed their case.

Mr Somiari, under the cross extermination by Mr Shasore on Friday, stated that the defendant's DNA was found in the apartment and the nightgown of his deceased wife.

He testified further that the defendant's DNA was not found anywhere on the body of his deceased daughter, nor in the kitchen where the bodies of both deceased persons were discovered.

'Unknown female'

The expert, however, stated that he found DNA of an unknown female in the kitchen.

When confronted that the crime scene investigation and forensic DNA analysis was deliberately aimed at gathering evidence and arriving at results showing that the defendant was guilty of the murder, Mr Somiari denied it.

Mr Somiari stated that the forensic DNA team took necessary measures to prevent contamination of the crime scene by putting on personal protective gear comprising gloves, shoe covers, and disposable laboratory coats.

However, when he was later shown photographs from his visit to the crime scene, he admitted that some members of the DNA team did not put on protective gears.

Discrepancies?

Mr Somiari was also unable to account for the number of people that had access to the crime scene in the period between the discovery of the bodies and the examination of the crime scene by forensic experts.

The prosecution witness also informed the court that samples for DNA analysis were only taken from three occupants of the apartment, the defendant and the two deceased persons, even though six people lived in the apartment at the time of the murder.

The prosecution has now closed its case.

The Court has adjourned the matter to October 25, 2019 for the continuation of trial.

It is expected that the defence would open its case on that day.

Painful exit

Before her death, the singer had been scheduled for the 'Kingmaker Concert,' a musical event to be headlined by Alterplate Music Company artiste, Harrysong.

A native of Kogi State, she was also set to promote her January 2018-released single, 'Alhaji Musa', before the alleged murder.

The 37-year-old singer signed a two-year record deal with an Asian record label, Petra Entertainment, in 2017.

The deal reportedly earned her a new Ford Explorer SUV, a house on Banana Island and international distribution with affiliates of her record company in Asia.

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