By Dayo Johnson
Akure—A 43-year-old farmer, Francis Joseph, who is married to four wives and blessed with nine children, has been arrested by Police detectives in Ondo State for allegedly raping his friend’s 12-year-old daughter and thereafter threatened her no to tell anyone.
Joseph, after allegedly luring the young girl to his house where he forcefully defiled her, warned her not to tell anybody about the incident or else she would die mysteriously.
The suspect, who hails from Ogoja, Cross River State, like the father of the young girl, lives within the same community in Lugbogi in Ondo town.
A family source explained that the little girl was scared to tell her parents until she started bleeding in the middle of the night and was rushed to the hospital.
Family sources said that “the 12-year-old girl was rushed to the hospital, bleeding profusely from the private part having been defiled and sexually abused. She is still in the hospital till now.
“Her parents reported the incident at the Enuowa Police Station, but to the surprise of all their neighbours, Joseph had left his home before the arrival of the policemen.”
Vanguard was informed that Joseph was arrested at a park in Ondo town on Thursday, while trying to board a bus to Lagos and was subsequently handed over to the Police.
However, the suspect alleged conspiracy by the people of the community to implicate him.
Joseph, however, had no answer when asked why he was fleeing the town before he was apprehended by the Police at the park.
The young girl, it was gathered, insisted that the suspect raped her in his house and warned her not to inform anybody.
While the family of the suspect had sent emissaries to the victim’s family to beg and settle the matter amicably, the parents of the little girl insisted on bringing the suspect to book.
The state Ministry of Women Affairs, according to findings, has waded into the matter to ensure that the incident is not swept under the carpet.
Police image maker, Femi Joseph, who confirmed the incident, said the case had been transferred to the State police headquarters in Akure, the state capital.
Joseph said investigation into the matter had commenced, adding that the suspect would be charged to court after completing its investigations.
Kidnappers want 10m for woman, step-son
In another development, a woman and her step-son have been kidnapped on their way to church at Osi community in Akure North council area of the state.
The victims are Mrs Olawumi Adeleye, 25, and Destiny Paul, 14.
Confirming the abduction of the duo, the traditional ruler of the town, the Iresi of Osi, Oba David Olajide, said the victims were abducted by herdsmen on their way from the church on Sunday.
Oba Olajide said: “It happened along Osi-Owo Road, very close to Akure Airport. They were kidnapped around 5:20p.m. on Sunday.
He said the kidnap incident had been reported to the state Police Command for investigation.
Reports had it that the kidnappers had contacted the husband of the woman and have demanded N10 million ransom.