Seven herdsmen who participated in the kidnap of former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, Olu Falae, were on Monday sentenced to life imprisonment by an Ondo State high court in Akure.
The convicts reportedly invaded Falae’s farm on September 21, 2015, and attacked his workers before whisking him away to an unknown destination.
The elder statesman spent 4 days in captivity before he was released after a N5 million ransom had reportedly been paid.
Trial Judge, Williams Olamide, in his ruling, held that the suspects were guilty of the kidnap charge brought against them by the Ondo State Government.
The convicted persons include: Abubakar Auta, Bello Jannu, Umaru Ibarahim, Masahudu Muhammed, Idris Lawal, Abdulkadir Umar and Babawuro Kato.
Justice Olamide said that evidences from the recovered ransom, call logs, and identification of the suspects by Falae, were enough to prove that they were guilty of the charge of kidnapping.
He, however, acquitted them of two out of the five charges against which bordered on conspiracy and armed robbery.
But counsel to the convicted persons, Abdulrahman Yusuf, was not satisfied with the judgement, hinting that he may file an appeal.
“By the time we get the judgment, we will study it and know the next step to take,” he told journalists.
The Director of Public Prosecutions at the Ondo State Ministry of Justice, Adesola Adeyemi-Tuki, described the judgment as justice well-served, adding that the defence team have a right of appeal.
“The prosecution has been able to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the accused committed the offence.
“One of the points is that the victim was able to identify three of them when he was kidnapped.
“We also proved their guilt through forensic analysis, phone records and tracking of mobile phones of defendants.
“Part of the ransom money was also found in the vehicle of the suspects, which is part of the evidence that corroborated their confessional statements,” she said.