A Warri Magistrate Court, Delta State, has adjourned the alleged missing crown case of the Olu of Warri to April 20, 2022.
The case with suit number: No.MW/178/C/2021, Commissioner of Police Vs. Chief Ayiri Emami, the Ologbotsere of Warri, was brought following alleged theft of a gold crown at Olu’s palace last year.
At the resumed hearing of the case yesterday, Jolone Ikomi and F.J Atie, appeared for the prosecution, having been granted FIAT to prosecute on behalf of the state Commissioner of Police.
Chief Victor E. Otomiewo appeared as lead defence counsel with Chief Emmanuel Uti, P. Okogie, E. F, Akporuvweku, O. Edowe, E. S. O., Ogholaja and M. K. Ighomrore appearing as co-defence counsels.
The charge was brought sequel to a petition from the palace of the Olu of Warri against Chief Ayiri Emami, the Ologbotsere of Warri Kingdom.
Counsel to the applicant/claimant, had on Monday urged the court to adjourn the case to enable the Investigating Police Officer (IPO) that was absent in court to appear the next hearing date.
He said the IPO was detailed from the AIG’s office in Benin and could not make it to court on time, thus prompting the application for stand down till noon and subsequent adjournment to yesterday, Wednesday 16/3/2022 for continuation of the case.
The IPO had in January opened the prosecution’s case, which had suffered several adjournments.
At the resumed hearing yesterday, the Applicant/Claimant counsel, Ikomi told the court that the palace of Olu of Warri, petitioned the Chief Justice of the state for the transfer of the case from the court on ground of insecurity and alleged closeness of the magistrate to the defendant.
The petition from the palace alleged that the magistrate should recuse herself from the case alleging link with Ayiri.
In a counter motion, the lead defence counsel, Otomiewo opposed the claims, saying the vicinity of the court was best suitable for the case as it was surrounded by several security formations.
The court, therefore, refused the application for transfer of the case to another court, and after much debate, the magistrate also ruled out the petition that the court premises was secure for the case.
The court subsequently adjourned the case to April 20 for continuation of hearing.