Not guilty, Evans recants guilty plea

Ebun Francis || Billionaire kidnapper, Chukwudumeme Onwuamadike, aka Evans on Thursday changed his earlier plea of guilty to not guilty at the resumed hearing of the two counts of conspiracy and kidnapping of one Duru Donatus in Lagos.

The offense was said to have been committed in February 2017.

When he was first arraigned with five others in August, the kidnapping kingpin pleaded Guilty to the charge alongside Uche Amadi and Okechukwu Nwachukwu while Izuchukwu Ogechi, Chilaka Ifeanyi, and Victor Chukwunonso pleaded not guilty.

At the resumed hearing of the case and just as the charges were about to be read, Ike Chika, the prosecuting counsel, informed the court of their intention to bring an amended charge which would require the defendants to take fresh pleas. He added that the amended charge had already been served on the defence.

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The statement elicited arguments between the prosecution and defence counsels, with the latter claiming they were just served minutes before the day’s proceedings began and, therefore, did not have the opportunity to discuss with their clients.

After listening to both lawyers, the trial Judge adjourned for 45 minutes to enable the defense lawyer brief his client on the amended charges.