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Lagos DPP to charge Baba Ijesha for sexual assault, other crimes

Section 135, Indecent Treatment of a child- punishable by 7 years imprisonment, Section 137- Defilement of a Child-, punishable by life imprisonment, Section 261- Sexual Assault by Penetration- punishable by life imprisonment, Section 262- Attempted Sexual Assault by Penetration, punishable by 14 years imprisonment and Section 263, Sexual Assault- punishable by 3 years imprisonment.

The Lagos State Directorate of Public Prosecutions(DPP) has estblished a prima facie case of sexual assault against popular actor,Olanrewaju James, popularly known as Baba Ijesha. He will will be charged to court soon.

This was disclosed on Tuesday by Lagos State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr Moyosore Onigbanjo SAN, who said the defendant will face a five count charge that bothers on indecent treatment of a child, defilement of a child, sexual assault by penetration, and attempted sexual assault by penetration, and sexual assault.

If convicted on sexual assault, the defendant risks life imprisonment.

The press statement signed by Onigbanjo reads:

“It would be recalled that the Nigeria Police Force arrested Mr. Olanrewaju James (also referred to as Baba Ijesha) on account of various sexual abuse allegations.  On the 30th of April, 2021, the Police forwarded the  case file of COP v Olanrewaju James to the Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP) for legal advise.

After due consideration of the facts in the case file, the Directorate of Public Prosecutions issued legal advise  on the 4th of May, 2021,  which is to the effect    that a prima facie case has been disclosed against Mr. Olanrewaju James and recommended he be charged under the following provisions of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015:

  1. Section 135, Indecent Treatment of a child-  punishable by 7 years imprisonment, 
  2. Section 137- Defilement of a Child-, punishable by life imprisonment, 
  3.  Section 261- Sexual Assault by Penetration-  punishable by life imprisonment, 
  4. Section 262- Attempted Sexual Assault by Penetration, punishable by 14 years imprisonment and 
  5. Section 263, Sexual Assault- punishable by 3 years imprisonment.

Whilst the  State would ensure that  Mr. Olanrewaju James’s rights  as enshrined in the Constitution are upheld, the Ministry of Justice would not relent in its efforts in ensuring that whoever sexually abuses any  resident of Lagos  State is speedily brought to book.

It is instructive to note that the Lagos State Ministry of Justice has been consistent in it’s efforts in protecting the vulnerable in our society and since the establishment of the Domestic and Sexual Violence Response Team in 2014, it has till date prosecuted over 800 cases of Sexual and Domestic offenses.

The Attorney-General hereby assures Lagosians and indeed Nigerians that  in accordance with the DPP’s advise,  charges would be filed accordingly.

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