An Edo High Court sitting in Auchi on Friday convicted and sentenced a 20-year-old man, Sufiyan Ahmed, to 21 years’ imprisonment for murder.
The convict had been arraigned earlier on a two-count charge of murder and sexual assault, after sexually assaulting and murdering a four-year-old girl, Umuaiman Suleman, for money ritual.
Justice Philip Imoedemhe in his judgment convicted Ahmed on the two-count charge of defilement and murder.
Imoedemhe held that all the evidence tendered before the court had convinced him beyond reasonable doubt that the convict was guilty of the crimes.
The judge also explained that the offences were punishable by life imprisonment, but he decided to use his discretion to reduce the jail term to 21 years.
“The evidence before me show that the defendant is guilty as charged and is hereby convicted to 21 years in prison,” Imoedemhe said.
Imoedemhe ordered that the convict be taken to the Auchi Correctional Centre to serve his jail term.
Earlier, Ahmed’s counsel, Anthony Omozenumu, had pleaded with the court to temper justice with mercy and not to sentence the convict to life imprisonment.
The prosecutor, Mrs Lauretta Asaka, had during the trial submitted that Ahmed committed the offences on April 21, 2019, at Egbetua Quarters in Ososo Community in Akoko Edo Local Government Area of Edo.
Asaka, a state prosecutor council from the Edo Ministry of Justice, said that the convict sexually assaulted and murdered the victim for money rituals.
She said that the offences were punishable under Section 401 of the Administration of Criminal Justice, Laws of Edo State, 2016.