An Ikeja Special Offences Court has sentenced Nollywood actor and comedian, Olanrewaju James, popularly known as Baba Ijesha to 16 years imprisonment for sexual assault.
Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo on Thursday convicted him after finding him guilty of two of the charges proffered against him.
He was accused of sexually assaulting the 14-year-old foster daughter of his colleague, actress and comedienne, Damilola Adekoya, better known as Princess.
- Baba Ijesha was being prosecuted on a six-count charge of child defilement that include indecent treatment of a child, sexual assault, attempted sexual assault by penetration and sexual assault by penetration.
- He was charged to court by the Lagos State Directorate of Public Prosecutions on the grounds that the offences contravene Section 135, 137, 261, 202, 262 and 263 of the Lagos State Criminal Law 2015, which stipulates life imprisonment for offenders.
- On June 24, 2021, he was arraigned and six prosecution witnesses testified against him.
What the judge ruled
- Though he pleaded not guilty to all the charges against him, the court found him guilty on some of the counts and acquitted him of the others.
- Justice Taiwo held that the prosecution failed to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the defendant is guilty of all the charges against him.
- Baba Ijesha was found guilty of four of six offences; two of which attract five years each while the other two attract three years each.
- Justice Taiwo held that the 16-year jail term will run concurrently, which means the comic actor will spend five years behind bars.