(1970) JELR 45919 (SC)    
Supreme Court  ·  SC.234/1969 ·  20 Feb 1970 ·  Nigeria
Other Citations
(1970) All N.L.R 36
GEORGE BAPTIST AYODOLA COKER Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria IAN LEWIS Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria ATANDA FATAYI-WILLIAMS Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria
Core Terms Beta
learned trial judge
reasonable doubt
accused persons
defence of alibi
totality of the evidence
trial judge
bethany-ehao village
chief williams
ovwodokpokpo village
sapele-ehao village
2nd p.w.
4th accused
8th p.ws
accused person
evidence of the witnesses
land dispute
learned trail judge
prosecution witnesses
west state
1st accused
1st p. w.
3rd accused
3rd p. w.
4th p.ws
5th accused
5th accused person
6th february
7th july
8th accused
charge no. uhc
concurrent sentences of imprisonment
evidence of the accused persons
identification of the accused person
identification of the accused persons
outskirts of ovwodokpokpo village
people of ovwodokpokpo village
prime mover
respect of each count

FATAYI-WILLIAMS, J.S.C. (Delivering the Leading Judgment)-On 7th July, 1969, the appellants were convicted in the Ughelli High Court by Prest J. in charge No. UHC/IC/69 containing two counts of burglary, ten counts of arson, and six counts of stealing. Originally ten persons were charged with these offences, but learned trial judge, after considering the evidence against each accused person in respect of each count and their respective testimony in defence, discharged the 5th, 7th and 10th accused persons after finding in his judgement as follows::-

"On the defence of alibi put forward by the 1st, 2nd, 5th, 7th, 9th and 10th accused, I am satisfied with the defence of alibi of the 5th, 7th and 10th accused. I find them not guilty on all the counts and they are acquitted and discharged."

The facts which are relatively straightforward may be stated briefly as follows. All the complainants, who later testified as witnesses for the prosecution, reside either in Bethany-Ehao village or in …

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