Nkechi Mogbo, the owner of the rented apartment where Usifo Ataga, late Super TV CEO, was allegedly murdered, has narrated how the deceased’s body was found.

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According to NAN, Mogbo was presented before a Lagos high court on Thursday to give evidence as the first prosecution witness (PW1) in the ongoing trial of Chidinma Ojukwu and two others.

Chidinma, Chioma Egbuchu, her sister, and one Adedapo Quadri are standing trial for the alleged murder of the Super TV CEO.

While giving evidence, Mogbo said that on June 13 at about 4 pm, a lady (suspect) called her on phone with a private number and requested the apartment.

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Mogbo said that she communicated with the lady through WhatsApp.

She added that the lady took the apartment and paid the sum of N125, 000 for three days.

“The payment was made through a Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB) account from one Mr Micheal Usifo, which had a time and date of transfer and my name as recipient,” she said.

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“The security guard at the apartment handed her the key to the apartment but two days later (June 15th) the lady sent a message to my WhatsApp stating that her friend would stay for two more days.”

The witness also said that on June 16, at about 10 am, the second payment of N50,000 for the two extra days was made from the same GTB account.

Mogbo disclosed that when she called her security guard for a different issue, “the security told me that a body was discovered on the ground of the apartment and that the lady left a night before.

“I panicked when my security guard told me about the body. I tried to contact the lady but couldn’t.

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“I sent her a text that the second payment didn’t go through that she should make another payment, just to initiate a conversation with her.

“I got another N50,000 payment which was made from the same GTB account.

“I tried to lure her to the apartment to come and collect the extra N50,000 but she said I should keep it for another extra two days for her friend.”

The witness said she informed the police about the development at the Maroko police station.

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She narrated how she was taken to Panti police station and how she stayed for “seven days in custody so as to help the police conduct a proper investigation.”

She also narrated how she could not identify Chidinma when she was brought to the station, adding that it was through the aid of a picture she got from her phone that enabled her to identify the suspect.

The witness said her conversations with the suspect were done through WhatsApp so she printed out the conversations and also sent them as emails to the police.

Adeyinka Adeyemi, the prosecutor and director of public prosecution who led the witness in evidence, tendered the printed copy of the WhatsApp conversation as evidence.

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Onwuka Egbu, counsel to the first defendant, however, objected to the admissibility of such document, saying “it is a public document which must be certified before it can be used as evidence”.

Yetunde Adesanya, the judge, overruled the argument of the defendant’s counsel and admitted the document as evidence.

Egbu, however, asked for an adjournment to enable him to study the documents recently served on him.

Egbu also requested more time to enable him to prepare for cross-examination of the witness.

Adesanya adjourned the case until November 15 for the continuation of trial.

The three defendants were arraigned on October 12 on a nine-count charge preferred against them by the Lagos state government over the alleged murder of Ataga.

Chidinma and Quadri are facing the first to eight-count charge bordering on conspiracy, murder, stabbing, forgery, making of bank statements, and stealing.

Chioma, the third defendant, is facing the ninth count charge of stealing the iPhone 7 belonging to the late Ataga.

In the charge, the defendants were alleged to have conspired amongst themselves and murdered Ataga on June 15, by stabbing him severally with a knife on his neck and chest.

The incident took place at No. 19, Adewale Oshin street, Lekki Phase 1, Lagos.



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