Justice Abiola Soladoye of Ikeja Sexual Offences and Domestic Violence Court has denied a bail grant to James Aguedo, a Babcock University student, involved in gang-rape of a student of the University of Lagos (UNILAG).
Reports revealed that Justice Soladoye in a ruling on Thursday said Aguedo, 20, did not provide substantive compelling circumstances as to why the court should grant him bail.
“The essence of bail is to ensure the defendant’s attendance at trial. In deciding an application for bail, certain factors must be taken into consideration such as the nature of the charge and the evidence adduced.
“Grant of bail of a defendant in a criminal offence is not automatic, it is at the discretion of the court.
“I am, therefore, of the view that the application before the court has not shown any compelling or exceptional circumstances to warrant the court exercising its discretion in favour of the applicant.
“The application for bail is hereby refused, and the court shall give this case accelerated trial; I so hold,” the Judge stated.
Reports revealed that Aguedo’s counsel, Lawal Pedro (SAN), had on March 25 prayed the court to grant him bail to enable him to write examination at the Babcock University in April and also submitted that the defendant suffered from ill-health and needed constant medical attention.
The SAN had attached Aguedo’s school identity card and admission letter to the bail application dated March 13, 2019.
The defendant is standing trial alongside Moboluwaji Omowole, Chuka Chukwu, Peace Nwankama and Osemeka Josephine who were charged with serial gang-rape of a UNILAG undergraduate (name withheld).
The case has been adjourned until the 2nd of May, 2019 for continuation of the trial.