Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo of a Lagos Special Offences Court sitting in Ikeja, has refused the post-conviction bail application of convicted actor, Olanrewaju James popularly known as Baba Ijesha.
Baba Ijesha was convicted by he court in July, 2022 for the indecent treatment of a child and sexual assault of a minor between 2013 and 2014, and again in 2021.
The conviction had led to him being sentenced to a concurrent term of five years imprisonment.
He then approached the court for bail pending the determination of his appeal at the Lagos Division of the Court of Appeal.
Lagos state counsel, Yusuf Sule and Omowumi Bajulaye-Bishi had argued in their response to the application that the convict has not met special circumstances for court to grant him bail pending appeal.
But In her ruling on Wednesday, Justice Taiwo held that the applicant must show special and exceptional circumstances, which Baba Ijesha was said to have failed to establish, adding that the jail term given to him is 5 years which is to run concurrently.
“There is no evidence that the appeal has been entered and there is no indication before this court that the court (of appea) will not treat the case expeditiously. It is in the view of this court that the applicant has failed to show special circumstances to warrant him bail because he is facing a serious crime.
“In view of this case, I am inclined to refuse the bail application of the applicant pending appeal,” the judge ruled.
On September 14, Baba Ijesha, through his counsel, Chukwudi Adiukwu, had told the court that the defence team had filed a notice for bail pending appeal in pursuant to section 6 (6) of the 1999 Constitution as amended.
Mr Adiukwu argued that section 51 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Law (ACJL), 2015 empowers the court to admit his client to the applicant to bail, either unconditionally or upon reasonable conditions.
He cited the “special circumstances” warranting the application, positing that It would serve the cause of justice as getting a date to hear the application at the court of appeal might be difficult, considering the number of cases in their dockets.
He added that with the prison calendar, the convict would have served his five-year concurrent jail term within three years and six months, before the hearing would have taken place at the appellate court.
According to the defence counsel, Baba Ijesha was of good conduct during his trial and was never absent even up till the judgement.