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Saturday, April 13, 2024

Police release Nollywood costumier accused of raping 10-year-old girl

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Over the weekend, a wave of criticisms swept through social media following the release of Prince Onyenwere, a Nollywood costumier accused of raping a 10-year-old girl in Delta State.

Nigerians accused the Delta State Police Command of compromising after granting bail to the costumier, who allegedly raped the girl on a movie set in January.

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After being subjected to severe beating for his actions, the suspect was subsequently handed over to the police for investigation.

In response to the backlash over his release, the Delta State Police Command addressed the situation, revealing why Prince Onyenwere was released from detention barely two months ago.

Delta State Police spokesperson Bright Edafe stated on his Instagram page on Saturday that the suspect was released due to the forgiveness extended by the victim’s mother, Austine Timi, and her family.

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Mr Edafe explained that Ms Timi’s decision to withdraw the case and her failure to present her daughter contributed to the suspect’s release.

READ ALSO: Police arrest four persons over alleged abduction of 10-year-old

Mr Edafe wrote: “Regarding the alleged rape of a 10-year-old girl by the actor “Prince”, I want members of the public to read how the mother of the victim compounded the entire case stating that she and her family has forgiven the suspect. She refused to show up with the victim. Attached are screenshots of text messages and an affidavit.

“On the premise of that, charging the suspect was granted a temporary bail with the hope that the family will do the right thing.”

The mother’s statement

A statement from Ms Timi, shared on Mr Edafe’s Instagram and obtained by PREMIUM TIMES, revealed that she — the victim’s mother — expressed her decision to withdraw her complaint, opting to let go of the matter.

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According to the statement, the victim’s mother conveyed that pursuing the case could inflict irreparable trauma on her daughter’s psyche and reasoning consciousness, potentially leaving a lasting stigma on her image.

Furthermore, she stated that Prince Onyenwere had shown remorse for his actions, thus prompting her to discontinue the investigation into the case.

She explained that she chose to drop the case to allow the costumier to start anew.

The statement signed before the Commissioner for Oaths on 18th February read: “I, AUSTIN TIMI (FEMALE) Christian, a citizen of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, resident at Warri, Delta State of Nigeria, do at this moment make an oath and as follow:

“That I am deponent herein. That l am the mother of EBITIMI AUSTINE (FEMALE). On the 29” day of January 2024, I reported a case of rape at GRA Police State against my daughter EBITIMI AUSTINE by one C. Prince (MALE). I am withdrawing my earlier complaint because I have decided to let go of the matter as a continuation of the case may cause irreparable trauma on the victim’s psyche and reasoning consciousness and may remain a stigma on her image forever, coupled with the fact that the said C. Prince (MALE) has shown remorse for his wrong deed. Thus, I want the Police Authority to discontinue the case investigation.

“I wish to discontinue the prosecution of the matter against the suspect so that he can have the opportunity to turn a new leaf, and I am not prepared to press further charges against the suspect nor come to court to testify.

“I make this affidavit for the information of the GENERAL PUBLIC, law enforcement agents and to WHOM IT MAY CONCERN to please take note. And that I make this solemn declaration, conscientiously, believing same to be true and correct to the best of my knowledge and following the oath law of 2006 of Delta State.”

Find the link to the Instagram post here: https://www.instagram.com/p/C3cIHLBq2DG/?igsh=dG9laHB0c25pZ3du

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