ASP Vandi pleads not guilty for murder of Bolanle Raheem

Our reporter/ ASP Drambi Vandi, the policeman accused of killing Lagos-based lawyer Mrs. Omobolanle Raheem on Christmas Day last year, on Monday pleaded not guilty to murder.

Vandi was arraigned before a Lagos High Court at the Tafawa Balewa Square presided over by Justice Ibironke Harrison where a one-count charge of murder was preferred on him.

When the case was called, the Lagos State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Moyo Onigbanjo, SAN, who is leading the prosecution told the court that he was informed the defence counsel was still on his way.

The court had to stand the matter down to await his arrival. Vandi is now being represented by Mr. Adetokunbo Odutola.

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In furtherance of the commitment of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) to ensure justice in the matter, the President of the Bar, Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Yakubu Maikyau; the Chairman of the NBA Lagos Branch, Ikechukwu Uwanna; and other executives of the association were also present in court to monitor proceedings.

Vandi is accused of shooting Raheem dead on Christmas Day. In company with his team, the cop who was attached to Ajiwe Police Station in Ajah allegedly tried to stop the lawyer and her family members as they drove back home from a church service.

Raheem was said to have been shot when the driver of the car she was in was attempting a U-turn under the Ajah Bridge. The victim was rushed to a hospital but was confirmed dead.

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The tragedy led to nationwide outrage, prompting the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Usman Alkali Baba, to recommend Vandi’s suspension on December 28.

The Police Service Commission (PSC) approved the suspension with immediate effect on December 29.

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