The Lagos State Directorate of Public Prosecutions has said 49-year-old Samson Adeneye and a woman, Oyerinde Olawunmi, 48, have a case to answer in a matter in which a human skull was found in the ceiling of an orthodox church in Lagos.
Two policemen attached to the Special Anti-robbery Squad – ASP Franklin Alade and Cpl Deleojo Odunayo – were also implicated in the matter, for abuse of office.
PUNCH Metro had reported in July 2013, that a human skull was found in the ceiling of the St. Peter Cherubim and Seraphim band on Moses Adebisi Street, in the Ketu area of the state.
Prior to the incident, Adeneye and Olawunmi, who were former members of the band, were said to have sent threat text messages to some of the church’s ministers.
The two suspects were said to have accused the pastors of occultism and threatened to deal with them and kill them.
Both suspects were said to have alerted the two SARS officers that there was a case of gunrunning in the assembly.
The policemen reportedly stormed the assembly without any search warrant and headed for the ceiling where they allegedly found the item.
Our correspondent learnt that further investigations by the police revealed that the two former members might have arranged the object to implicate the ministers, as suggested by earlier text messages sent to them.
They were subsequently arrested and arraigned before a Surulere Magistrate’s Court on charges of unlawful possession of human head.
The matter had been adjourned for DPP’s advice.
The DPP in its advice, signed by the Deputy Director, Adegboyega Bajulaiye, said, “After carefully considering the facts available in the duplicate case file, this office is of the view that there are sufficient facts to establish a prima facie case of conspiracy to commit felony to wit; offering violence to officiating ministers of religion, written threat to kill and publication of false news which is likely to cause fear and alarm to the public….
“Facts available in the duplicate case file reveal that prior to January 19, 2013, there was a malice that brewed up over the years between Apostle Albert Samson and Samson Adeneye, which culminated into unauthorised search on the premises of Albert by men of SARS, led by ASP Franklin Alade, on the trumped-up allegation of gunrunning. This act of the police officers, which was believed to have been instigated by Adeneye, amount to abuse of office….”
The advice further stated that the two defendants had been sending death threat messages to the ministers, which were meant to distract them from their duties as ministers.
On the matter of the skull, the advice said, “There is however a strong inference from the facts in the case file that Adeneye may have been instrumental to placing ritual objects, including human skulls, on the ceiling of Albert’s church because of his prior accusation of Albert being a ritualist. This will only amount to speculation and suspicion, which no matter how grave, cannot stand in the place of law, particularly in the absence of eyewitness account or unequivocal evidence of inference.”
The DPP said based on its findings, Adeneye and Olawunmi, should be arraigned for conspiracy to commit felony, written threat to kill and publication of false news.
Four other suspects were ordered to be released, if still in police custody.
The magistrate, Mrs. A.O Adedayo, adjourned the matter till July 1, 2014.