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Baba Ijesha bags 16 years jail term for sexual assault of minor

Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo of the Sexual and Domestic Violence Offences court in Ikeja, Lagos, on Thursday convicted and sentenced Nollywood actor, Olanrewaju Omiyinka James, alias Baba Ijesha, to sixteen years imprisonment for sexual assault of an under age girl.

The judge found the defendant guilty of four offences; out of the six counts for which he stood trial.

In tears after the pronouncement of the sentence, Baba Ijesha still proclaimed his innocence. He was surrounded by his fellow actors who tried in vain to console him.

He was pronounced guilty of counts 2,3,4 and 5 while the prosecution could not prove on counts 1 and 6.

The six counts charges are;

  1. Sexual assault by penetration
  2. Indecent treatment of a child
  3. Sexual assault of 2011
  4. Indecent treatment of a child 2015
  5. Sexual assault 2015
  6. Attempted sexual assault by penetration

He was found guilty of indecent treatment of a child and sexual assault, which is contrary to Section 135 of Lagos State Criminal Law 2015.

The law stipulates that “Any person who unlawfully and indecently deals with a child commits a felony and is liable on conviction to imprisonment for seven (7) years.

The judge while sentencing the convict said, this case bring to the limelight of cases in the society despite the effort of government and the non governmental organization to sensitive the public on the

”This is very sad. The behavior of the defendant is appalling, the case shows the lengths people can go in exhibiting the animalistic urge in them to abuse the position of friendship.

”The defendant took his acting too far. Children are frequently preyed on because of their inability to defend themselves.” The judge said the sentence is to run concurrently.

Baba Ijesa’s journey to court and his eventual conviction started on 22 April, 2021 when the police arrested and detained him over the accusation that he allegedly sexually assaulted a 14-year-old girl.

The mother of the girl, a comedienne, Damilola Adekoya, had accused Baba Ijesa (with a video evidence) of sexually assaulting her daughter, a minor.

The Lagos State government arraigned Baba Ijesa before the court on a six-count charges, including indecent treatment of a child, defilement of a child, sexual assault by penetration, attempted sexual assault by penetration and sexual assault.

Though Baba Ijesa pleaded not guilty to the charges, the state government said he has a case to answer and he was recommended to face a five-count charge of sexual abuse.

On 4 May, 2021, the Lagos State government established a prima facie case against the Nollywood actor and recommended that he should be charged to court under the five provisions of the Criminal Law of Lagos State.

The Lagos judicial authorities granted Baba Ijesa bail on 14 May, 2021, due to his health condition, but with some conditions which he could not meet and he was denied bail and he was further remanded in prison.

Baba Ijesa was, however, granted bail on June 24, 2021, on the condition he should tender the sum of Two Million Naira with two sureties.

Forensic experts on September 28, 2021, gave evidence of how Baba Ijesa allegedly sexually molested the under-age girl, but he, on February 17, 2022, challenged the content of the video evidence tendered as witness, claiming that it was tampered with.

The Domestic Violence and Sexual Offences Court, Ikeja subsequently, on June 6, 2022, fixed today, July 14, 2022, for judgment on the case.

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