An Igbosere High Court, Lagos State on Monday sentenced a cook, Janet James, to 14 years in prison for beating her eight-year-old brother, Saviour, to death for stealing meat from a pot of soup.
Justice Adedayo Akintoye convicted Janet, 34, following her plea of guilty to an amended one-count of manslaughter.
Akintoye said the sentence would take effect from August 21, 2009, when the Janet was first arraigned and remanded by a magistrates’ court.
Akintoye in her judgment, noted that the case was transferred to the high court in 2013 but on Monday, April 8, the defendant entered a plea bargain agreement with the prosecution
She said that the defendant, however, changed her plea to a plea of guilty to the amended charge of manslaughter.
She said: “The sentence and plea bargain agreement states that the defendant has shown remorse for the offence of manslaughter committed on August 10, 2009, against the person of one Saviour.
“Others are that the defendant pleads guilty to the offence as charged, the defendant gives an undertaking to be of good behaviour, upon the completion of the jail term.
“In view of this, therefore, the defendant, Janet James, is hereby found guilty of manslaughter and is accordingly convicted of same.
“I have taken into consideration that this is a 2013 case. I have also been guided by the plea and sentencing agreement entered into by the prosecution and the defendant.
“I note also the fact that the defendant has been in remand custody for many years. As a result, therefore, the defendant is hereby sentenced to a term of 14 years.
“The term of imprisonment is to run from the date of remand, which is August 21st 2009. This is the judgment of the court.”
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Janet was re-arraigned at the high court in 2013, on a one-count of murder.
She pleaded not guilty to the charge.
The Prosecution counsel, Mrs Abiola Gbadamosi, told the court that Janet committed the offence at 8 p.m, on August 10, 2009, in the Ilupeju area of Lagos State.
Gbadamosi said the convict killed Saviour by beating him with a turning stick after accusing him of stealing meat from a pot of soup.
She then dumped his body in the premises of an insurance company in Ilupeju.
She said the offence contravened the provisions of Section 317 of the Criminal Code, Laws of Lagos State 2003.