Justice I. Nicholas Oweibo of the Federal High Court, Ikoyi, Lagos, has adjourned till May 13th, 2020, ruling on the admissibility of “shocking evidence” against Azeez Fashola, a.k.a Naira Marley.
The court will also rule on continuation of Fashola’s trial for his alleged involvement in credit card fraud.
Naira Marley is standing trial on an 11-count charge of conspiracy and credit card fraud, preferred against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.
On Friday, prosecution witness 2 (PW2), Augustine Anosike, forensic expert with the EFCC, sought to tender in evidence a compact disc (CD) containing information, analysis and extractions from the defendant’s phone.
At the previous sitting, Anosike told the court that the forensic analysis carried out on Naira Marley’s iPhone revealed what he called mind-boggling evidence against him which were extracted and transferred into a CD, alongside printed documents.
Prosecution counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo presented the documents before the court and urged the court to admit them in evidence.
The defence counsel, Olalekan Ojo (SAN), however opposed the admissibility of the documents on the grounds that the CD does not have the proper authentication required by law, and therefore improperly obtained, as contained in the Cyber Crime Prohibition and Prevention Act, 2015.
Ojo also argued that there may have been interferences while the documents were being produced at the forensic lab of the EFCC. He finally submitted that the CD does not bear any name, title, department, but a signature which can’t be authenticated.
He urged the court to dismiss the admissibility of the documents.
But Oyedepo said that there was no contravention of Section 39 of Cyber Crime Prohibition and Prevention Act, 2015 as claimed by the defence counsel, as what was sought to be tendered is the forensic content of the defendant’s iPhone that was already admitted in evidence.
He added that the extractions before the court are materially relevant to the charge.