PROPER APPROACH TO AN INDICTMENT CONTAINING CONSPIRACY CHARGE AND SUBSTANTIVE CHARGES  

 

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27/05/2020 9:26 am  
"I must state that the proper approach to an indictment containing conspiracy charge and substantive charges is to deal with the later, that is, the substantive charges first and then proceed to see how far the conspiracy count has been made out in answer to the fate of the charge of conspiracy. Conspiracy being an agreement between two or more persons is either to do a lawful act by unlawful means or to do an unlawful act. Failure to prove a substantive offence does not make conviction for conspiracy inappropriate, as it is a separate and distinct offence, independent of the actual offence conspired to commit. See: Segun Balogun vs. Attorney General Ogun State (2002) 2 SC (pt.11) 89, (2002) 4 SCM 23, (2002) 2 SCNJ 196. The gist of the offence of conspiracy is the meeting of the mind of the conspirators. This is hardly capable of direct proof for the offence of conspiracy is complete by the agreement to do the act or make the omission complained about. Hence, conspiracy is a matter of inference from certain criminal acts of the parties concerned done in pursuance of an apparent criminal purpose in common between them and in proof of conspiracy the acts or omissions of any of the conspirators in furtherance of the common design may be and very often are given in evidence against any other or others of the conspirators. It is, therefore, the duty of the Court in every case of conspiracy to ascertain as best as it could the evidence of the complicity of any of those charged with that offence."  See Coker J.S.C in Njovens Vs. The State (1972) LPELR- 2042(SC)". -
 
 
PER Y. B. NIMPAR, J.C.A IN CPL ENOBONG UDO VS THE STATE

suit no:CA/C/36C/2019
Legalpedia Electronic Citation: (2020) Legalpedia (CA) 19885


 


 


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