An Ikeja Sexual Offences and Domestic Violence Court has sentenced an apprentice, Godwin Ogboniya, to life imprisonment for sexually assaulting his employer’s 9-year-old daughter.
Justice Abiola Soladoye held that the prosecution proved beyond reasonable doubt, the elements of the one-count charge of sexual assault by penetration against Ogboniya
She said that the defendant, who had been living with the survivor’s father for three years, was an “unkind and unworthy employee who embarked on sexual frolicking with the nine-year-old girl”.
According to her, the survivor recognized the defendant as her father’s apprentice who lived with them for three years.
The judge added that the defendant’s testimony that the survivor’s mother tried to seduce him, was self-serving and his denial was an afterthought which did not hold water.
She said: “The nine-year-old girl recognized the defendant in the dock as the man who sexually assaulted her on several occasions when her parents were not home.
“The survivor said and I quote ‘he helps my daddy when nobody is around, carries me to the toilet and asks me to pee, takes me back to the parlour, puts his finger in my bum and also put his penis in my vagina’.
“Upon careful review of the evidence adduced before this court both oral and documentary, the survivor’s testimony was lucidly corroborated with other prosecution witnesses which were very compelling.
“The investigative police officer, through whom the medical report was tendered, was very detailed, upright and diligent in her testimony.”
Soladoye further said that she believed the evidence of all the prosecution witnesses as the exhibit tendered was self-explanatory and spoke volumes.
She added that proof of injury or rupture of the hymen was not necessary in the case of sexual assault, as penetration, no matter how slight, was sufficient to prove the offence.
“This defendant, haven found guilty as charged, penetrating the vagina of the young victim, is hereby sentenced to life imprisonment.
“He should have his name registered in the sexual offences register, as maintained by Lagos State,” she said.
The Judge urged parents and guardians to be watchful not to entrust their children in the hands of irresponsible adults like the defendant.
She added that the need for community awareness through continuous campaigns would go a long way to eradicate the menace of sexual offences in society.
The state counsel, Ms Abimbola Abolade presented four witnesses during the trial while the convict testified as sole witness.
Abolade said that the convict committed the offence between 2019 and 2021 on Ogbewi Street, Cele Egbe in Ikotun, Lagos.
The prosecution submitted that the father of the survivor reported the case to the police after the survivor summoned up the courage to narrate her ordeals to him.
According to the prosecution, the offence violated Section 261 of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State, 2015