Two years after, Court vindicates man in ex girlfriend sex tape case

In a recent ruling by the Federal High Court in Calabar, Justice Rosemary Dugbo has discharged and acquitted Charles Oberu of all charges brought against him.

The charges had stemmed from Oberu’s alleged distribution of a sex tape featuring himself and his ex-girlfriend, Ms. Paradise Gracious John. Ms. John, a nurse in training at the time at the Cross River State School of Nursing, Itigidi, had accused Mr. Oberu of sharing the video in April 2022

Mr Oberu was arrested in late April 2022 and charged with two counts of cyberstalking and blackmail (suit number FHC/CA/126C/2022). He pleaded not guilty and has been held in remand at the Medium Security Custodial Center, Afokang, Calabar since his arrest. The case suffered numerous adjournments before finally being resolved on Thursday.

In her ruling, Justice Dugbo held that the prosecution failed to link the iPhone involved in the case to the defendant, and therefore failed to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt.

She further stated that the prosecution had not discharged the burden of proof placed on them and that there was no live evidence for the court to convict the defendant. As such, she discharged and acquitted Mr. Oberu of all charges.

Speaking to reporters after the ruling, counsel to the defendant, Oboko Oku Esq., expressed satisfaction with the ruling, stating that the case was frivolous and would have ended the life of an innocent man in prison. Meanwhile, O. E Obeten Esq., who held brief for the substantive prosecutor, S. A. Awurikuriye Esq, said that the judgment was fair and that the court was not sentimental.

The ruling brings an end to a long-drawn-out legal battle for Mr. Oberu, who can now return to his normal life without the specter of criminal charges hanging over his head.

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