Michael Gabriel, Port Harcourt
After 10 years of a legal battle, the State High Court sitting in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, has sentenced three persons to death by hanging for killing a former Niger Delta militant leader, Soboma George and a groundnut seller, Joy John-Ejims.
The court declared that Dougbra Ogbe, Emmanuel Gladstone and Bere Matthew, were guilty of conspiracy and murder of the militant leader, who was shot dead at a football field in Port Harcourt.
Justice George Omereji, who delivered the judgement that lasted for two hours, directed that the convicts should be tied on their necks till they were confirmed dead.
Omereji averred that the prosecution was able to prove the case beyond every reasonable doubts, especially with the evidence of the eyewitness, who also suffered bullet wound during the attack that led to Soboma’s death.
He said the confessional statements by the defendants that they killed Soboma because he wanted them dead for refusing to kill former governor Rotimi Amaechi and his deputy, further indicted them.
The prosecution lawyer, Ipalibo Karibo-Botoye, said he was happy that the court served justice after 10 years of the legal battle.
Karibo-Botoye said, “We are happy that ten years after the murder of George, justice has come to stay. It is a thing of joy that the court saw that we proved our case. If they go on appeal, we are ready to defend this case to logical conclusion. This is justice for the family.”