By Davies Iheamnachor, PORT HARCOURT
The absence of suspects in court has stalled the trial of four persons over the murder of one Chidi Onwukwe in Rivers State.
The suspects, Samuel Onwukwe, Andrew Otanye, Samuel Emmason and Promise George are standing trial in charge PHC/667/CR/2022, before a Rivers State High Court sitting in Port Harcourt over their alleged involvement in the killing of Onwukwe.
- Advertisement -
The victim, Chidi Onwukwe, was allegedly killed in his house at Elelenwo Housing Estate in Port Harcourt Rivers State, on January 27, 2021.
According to the charge sheet, the victim was killed when he was with his nephew, Samuel Onwukwe, who is the 1st defendant, as the killers allegedly broke in and reportedly stabbed him to death.
At the resumed hearing in the matter for the defendants to enter their plea, none of them was present in court, forcing the court to adjourn till July 17, 2022.
While the 1st to 3rd defendants had no legal representation in court, the 4th defendant whose counsel, J. Okpamen, appeared, informed the court that she does not know the whereabouts of her client.
Prosecuting counsel, Essien Edet, expressed regret that the Investigative Police Officer, IPO, could not bring Samuel, the only suspect in detention, to court, adding that others were not also in court to take their plea.
Edet said: “The case is for a plea. The problem is that the defendants are not in court. We cannot serve them the process because we don’t know their whereabouts.
“Give us another date if they are not here, you can make your declaration. The 1st defendant is in police custody but the IPO is in Bayelsa State for a special assignment. We are asking for an adjournment to enable the defendants to appear to take the plea.”
The trial judge, Justice Sylvester Popnen, urged the prosecutor to prepare himself for the matter and be acquainted with the procedures of administration of criminal justice.
The court advised the prosecutor to ensure he serves the process on the defence to enable them to appear in court to take their plea and adjourned June 17, 2022.
The post Absence of suspects stalls murder trial of 4 in Port Harcourt appeared first on Nubunk News.