NIGERIA: Man agrees to marry rape victim, regains freedom

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A 27-year-old tailor, Adeduro Ayodeji, who allegedly abducted, raped and impregnated a 15-year-old girl, has been set free by an Akure Magistrate’s Court after he agreed to marry the victim.

The decision of the court followed a letter written by the victim’s father, Michael Adikwu, withdrawing the case since the accused had agreed to marry the victim.

Adeduro was said to have abducted, repeatedly raped and impregnated the victim, every time she was sent to collect money from him.

The accused was first arraigned on June 18, 2013 and the offence was said to have contravened Section 361 of the Criminal Code, Cap 37, Vol.1, Laws of Ondo State of Nigeria, 2006.

The Prosecutor, Inspector Zakari Ibrahim, told the court that the offence was committed on April 14, 2013 at about 4pm, at No.15. Ifesowapo Street, along Ondo Road, Akure.

Adikwu, a farmer, had earlier written a petition to the Police Area Commander, Akure, stating that his daughter had absconded from home and all efforts to locate her proved abortive.

He alleged in the letter: “It was last week l discovered that it was the said Ade who abducted her, stopped her from going to school and kept her in his house indefinitely. All attempts made to secure my daughter from the said Ade’s custody proved abortive as he resulted to threatening the entire family with cutlass and thugs if l dare ask for my daughter‘s release again.’’

The case, however, took a dramatic turn at the weekend when the prosecutor told the court that the victim’s father had written a letter to withdraw the case.

Adikwu, who came to the court with his daughter, said he was no longer interested in the case because the accused had agreed to marry his daughter.

In the letter dated July 5, 2013, he wrote: “The reason for withdrawal is that the family of the accused person has come to beg me and have promised to take care of my daughter who was impregnated.”

The Presiding Magistrate, Johnson Adelegan, struck out the case, following the letter written.

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