Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo of a Special Offenses Court, Ikeja, has convicted and sentenced a medical practitioner, Wilfred Fajemisin to two years imprisonment over unlawful possession of a property document.
The judge gave the verdict after declaring Dr Fajemisin guilty as charged over the charges levelled against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
The medical doctor was arraigned on a three-count charge on July 8, 2020, over conspiracy, obtaining by pretence and forgery contrary to section 246, 636(1) of the Criminal Law of Lagos State.
He was alleged to have forged about 15 documents, including the ‘Deed of Assignment’ of the estate belonging to late Ashamu.
However, he pleaded not guilty to the charge, making the prosecution commence trial.
The lead prosecution counsel, Mr Samuel Daji, called seven witnesses, including a handwriting expert and an EFCC operative that investigated the case.
Delivering judgement, Justice Taiwo said the prosecution failed to prove two of the three charges.
However, she found him guilty on the third charge (possession of a forged document).
The judge held that “it is the duty of the prosecution to prove the ingredient of the alleged offence against the defendant. There is substantial evidence that the defendant was found in possession of the forged Deed of Assignment.
“The prosecution failed to call Stanley Agwu. The prosecution could not prove Jide Adekunle, who was alleged to have prepared the Deed of Assignment and was suspected of having paraded himself as a lawyer in Bamigbose’s office.
” It is clear to the court that Jide Adekunle had denied having a transaction with the defendant.. it is the defendant that was found in possession of the Deed of Assignment.
“In conclusion, I found that circumstantial evidence was proved against the defendant. The defendant was charged for intent to defraud, have in possession, the forged document.”
Justice Taiwo, therefore, found him guilty of having forged a document and, after that, sentenced Fajeminsin to two years imprisonment.
She, however, gave him the option of N500,000.00 instead of the prison term.
Earlier, the defendant’s counsel, Mr Sunday Akunure, pleaded that defendant is a medical doctor who has saved many lives.
” He is remorseful and never go back to having the forged document. I pray the court to temper justice with mercy and give him a fine option.
EFCC counsel, Babatunde Sonoiki, urged the court to sentence him according to section 1(3) of the EFCC Act.
He submitted that there was no provision of an option of fine in the law.
Therefore, the judge said she had carefully considered the plea for mercy and read the section of law dealing with the offence of obtaining by false pretence and subsequently sentenced Fajeminsin to two years with an option N500,000.0