The Court of Appeal, Ibadan Division, on Friday, June 26, 2020, upheld the six years jail sentence handed one Olutope Oladipo after being convicted of stealing by Justice Mohammed Owolabi of the Oyo State High Court on November 20, 2018.
Justice Simon Haruna Tsamani, who delivered the lead judgment on behalf of Justice Tijani Abubakar, affirmed that the lower court’s decision was consistent with the spirit and letter of the law against the offence committed and, therefore, dismissed the appeal.
After running a full trial, Justice Owolabi had, in 2018, found Oladipo guilty of a four-count charge bordering on stealing. The offence was contrary to Section 390 of the Criminal Code, Cap 38, Laws of Oyo State.
The court also ordered him to restitute to his victim a sum of N10,499,600 (Ten Million, Four Hundred and Ninety-Nine Thousand, Six Hundred Naira).
Dissatisfied with the judgment, Oladipo headed to the appeal court to challenge the verdict. His hope of a reprieve was, however, dashed on Friday.
Oladipo’s journey to prison started with a petition by a foreign-based complainant who alleged that sometimes in May 2015 he was advised by the convict (his supposed spiritual adviser) to make some investments in Nigeria and also pledged to manage same for him pending his return to the country.
According to him, between 2015 to 2016, he had sent a total of N16,050,000 to the convict for the purchase of a landed property in Ibadan, establishment of a Gari Processing Plant and purchase of a truck.
Oladipo, the petitioner further alleged, failed to carry out the investment plans, but rather converted the money to personal use. The case was prosecuted by Ifeanyi Agwu and Sanusi Galadanchi.