Ex Sylva’s aide begs court to transfer rape trial to another judge

Rape trial
Chief Richard Kpodo

THE ongoing rape trial of Chief Richard Kpodo, a former Security Adviser to Ex-Governor Timipre Sylva was halted on Wednesday as the accused sought transfer of the case to another judge.

Although the accused defiance team was slated to open defence on Wednesday, state prosecutor Andrew Arthur Esq informed the court that there is a pending application by the accused to have the case tried by another judge.

The trial judge, Justice E Eradiri in a reaction to the development ruled that the case is adjourned indefinitely to await the decision of the Chief Judge of Bayelsa, Justice Kate Abiri.

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“The case is adjourned sine die to await the decision of the Chief Judge on the application before her,” Eradiri said.

The victim had along side three witnesses, testified before the judge and cross-examined by defence counsel Mr Julious Iyekoroghe before the prosecution team closed its case.

It would be recalled that Kpodo, was on July 31, 2018, arranged for alleged rape at High Court 7 after being earlier arraigned before a magistrates court in Yenagoa.

Kpodo was charged on two counts of unlawful detention and rape of the victim, a 26-year-old female cashier at the hotel run by the accused.

The victim, a 26 year old, had earlier testified alongside her uncle and a medical doctor who examined her on June 9 after she was allegedly raped the previous day.

Kpodo who was denied bail by the trial judge would remain in prison custody pending the reassignment of the case to another judge by the Chief Judge of Bayelsa

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