Nkem Iheanacho, a 38-year-old marine engineer, was on Thursday sentenced to 15 years in prison by an Ikeja High Court for beating his wife, 32-year-old Regina, to death.
Justice Raliatu Adebiyi, while passing the sentence on Thursday, said that the sentence should serve as a deterrent to men who engage in acts of domestic violence against their spouses.
“I have taken into account the prevalence of domestic violence in the country and this sentence is to send a message to men who still engage is such a callous act to desist.
“I also took note of the average Nigerian male expectancy age in Nigeria to be 54 years, according to the World Health Organisation.
“The defendant was 34 years old when he committed the crime; he is now 38 years old.
“I hereby sentence Nkem Iheanacho to 15 years in prison with effect from March 13, the date of the judgment,” Adebiyi said.
Immediately after the sentence, Iheanacho wore a resigned expression on his face and was immediately led out of the courtroom by prison officials.
Iheanacho was found guilty of manslaughter contrary to Section 222 and punishable under Section 227 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State 2011.
Iheanacho’s counsel, Mr Akaene Spurgeon, in his allocutus, pleaded with the court to temper justice with mercy.
“I urge the court to temper justice with mercy; the defendant has shown serious remorse for his actions.
“He is a young man and a marine engineer with three young children to cater for,” Spurgeon said.
During the trial, the prosecution for the state led by Mrs O.A Olugasa had told the court Nkem beat his wife at 12 midnight on May 12, 2013 at their residence at 3, Calvary Street, Iyana-Isasi, Lagos-Badagry Expressway, Lagos.
“He is a marine engineer who worked at Genesis Worldwide Shipping Company, Apapa, Lagos.
“On that fateful day, he accused Regina of infidelity and he beat her to a state of unconsciousness.
“He did not take her to the hospital after she lost consciousness leading to her death in their home,” the prosecutor said.