…as ASP Vandi pleads not guilty
The Lagos High Court Sitting at the Tafawa Balewa Square on Lagos Island has reserved April 3, to rule on a “no case submission” filed by the suspended Assistant Superintendent of Police, ASP, Drambi Vandi, who allegedly killed a Lagos-based lawyer, Omobolanle Raheem, on December 25, 2022.
Channels reports that Justice Ibironke Harrison reserved the date after defence counsel, Mr. Adetokunbo Odutola, adopted his final written address on behalf of his client, on a no-case submission application filed before the court on February 20, 2023.
In the application, Vandi asked the court to dismiss the suit and discharge him claiming that he has no case to answer.
In his arguments, the defence counsel told the court to note among other things that none of the eyewitnesses saw the defendant shoot and that the ballistic report of the gun allegedly fired expressly stated that the bullet cannot be linked with any of the firearms recovered from the police officers at the scene.
Odutola also urged the court to note the testimony of the pathologist who confirmed that the death of the deceased was a result of a gunshot injury at the left axillary fold and the bullet moved from a posterior to anterior and the bullet pierced through the chest.
The pathologist had also testified that it was not his duty to know who shot the deceased, but his duty was to determine the cause of death and the trajectory of the injury.
Based on what he described as the “inconsistency and contradictions of the prosecution witnesses “from top to bottom,” Odutola urged the court to quash the charge against the defendant and discharge him accordingly as the prosecution had failed woefully in its attempt to make a prima-facie case against him.
The defence counsel also argued that the evidence led and the documents tendered do not present a compellable case of suspicion, however, minute to enable the court to order the defendant to enter his defence.
The prosecution led by the Attorney General of Lagos State, Moyosore Onigbanjo (SAN), has however countered the arguments and urged the defendant to defend himself insisting that the prosecution has successfully made its case against him
After listening to the arguments of both parties, Justice Harrison adjourned the matter till April 3 for ruling.
On Jan. 16th, the Lagos State Government commenced the prosecution of ASP Drambi Vandi by calling its first witness, Inspector Matthew Ameh, a police Officer, who was present at the crime scene.
Before then, the Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice who personally led the prosecution had arraigned Vandi on a one-count charge of murder.
The charge, which was filed on Dec. 28th, three days after the incident alleged that Vandi killed Raheem by shooting her in the chest, an offence contrary to Section 223 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.
On Feb. 15th, the prosecution closed its case against the defendant after calling eleven witnesses which included police officers, the husband and sister of the deceased, the ballistician and the pathologist, Dr Oluwaseun Williams.