Public Prosecutions

public prosecutions

Dr Babajide Martins

DIRECTOR, PUBLIC PROSECUTIONS

Dr. Jide Martins is a Legal Luminary, a Progressive and Seasoned Technocrat,  a Human Rights Advocate, a Passionate and Relentless Worker in the Temple of Justice.

He is a graduate of University  of Lagos and was called to the Nigerian Bar in 1990 and is  also a Solicitor of the Supreme Court of England and Wales.

Dr. Martins graduated  with Master in Law, LLM in European Management  and Employment  Law and Master of Business Administration (MBA)  respectively from the University  of Leicester, England. He thereafter bagged  a PhD in  Constitutional law from Birkbeck  College, University of London.

Dr.  Martins until his appointment as the new DPP, he was the Director of the Lagos State Office of the Public Defender an agency  saddled with the mandate of ensuring that every resident of Lagos State has equal access to justice. Prior to joining the Lagos State Ministry  of Justice, Dr. Martins had worked in England as a Crown Prosecutor  and at Blackburn  Borough Council in England, where his practice included  Criminal Prosecution, Civil Litigation, Employment Law, Youth Justice and Safeguarding.

A Versatile Facilitator who has conducted, presented papers and served as a discussant at the National Judicial Institute  and Lagos State Judiciary legal week. He has also conducted several trainings on Criminal Justice Administration to Police Officers, Magistrates  and Customary Court Judges.  He is an ardent advocate of Restorative Justice and Mediation in Criminal Matters.

He is an  advocate of a fair and just Criminal Justice system and was a member of the committee that drafted the Lagos State  Sentencing guidelines. He has served as the Liasion Officer on the European Union funded  Rule of Law and Anti- corruption  Programme administered by the British Council in Lagos state. He is  also currently the Liasion Officer for the Ministry of Justice on the German GIZ Programme for support for the Criminal Justice Administration.

 He has served as Special Assistant on Criminal Prosecutions to two former Lagos State Attorney  Generals and was formerly a  Deputy  Director of Public Prosecutions,  before his recent appointment  as Director of Office of Public Defender.

Dr. Martins is a current member of the Lagos State Biosecurity Board.

The Directorate of Public Prosecutions of Lagos State was established by a gazette No 4 published on the 4th of July 1968. This was after the creation of Lagos State in 1967. Prior to this time the Prosecution of State offences was done by Prosecutors of the Federal Ministry of Justice, then in the Federal territory of Lagos.

The 1963 Republican Constitution specifically created an office of the Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP) as a separate and distinct office in the public service of the federation. This autonomy gave the DPP fairly wide discretion in deciding whether to prosecute in any particular case or not.

In the present dispensation, the general supervisory power over criminal proceedings in Nigeria at both State and Federal levels is constitutionally vested in the Attorney General of the Federation and a State by virtue of Sections 174 and 211 respectively, of the 1999 Constitution.

The State counsels in Directorate of Public Prosecutions are the officers of the Attorney-General through whom he exercises his criminal prosecutorial powers in respect of State officers.

The first Director of Public Prosecutions for Lagos State was Mr. (now Late Justice Olanrewaju O. Bada (1968-1972) who was deputy to the Late Honourable Justice Sogbetun then Federal Director of Public Prosecutions. After Late Justice Bada was elevated to the higher bench as a Judge of the High Court, he was succeeded by Mr. (now Late Honourable Justice) Oladipo Williams.

FUNCTIONS

The primary functions of the Directorate are as follows:

  • Issuance of Legal Advice on case files sent by the Police.
  • Instituting prosecution against Defendants.
  • Prosecution of Criminal Cases at both the High Courts and the Magistrate Courts.
  • Handling of Appeals at the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court.
  • Handling of Petitions.
  • Handling of Applications for Bail and Enforcement of Fundamental Human Rights in both State and Federal High Courts.
  • Representing the HAG/CJ and SG/PS at meetings

Any others matters assigned by the HAG/CJ and the SG/PS

VIEW AD-HOC DUTIES

VIEW ALL OFFICERS OF THE DIRECTORATE

State Counsel are assigned to prosecute in the seven courts in the Criminal Division of the High Court of LagosState (3 in Lagos and 4 in Ikeja). They are also assigned to prosecute in the Magistrate Courts within the State.

The Directorate has 5 (Nos) counsel assigned to the Environmental Sanitation and Kick Against Indiscipline Unit, and Special Offences Court which was created by the Enforcement and Compliance Unit of the Ministry of Environment. The Courts are located at KAI Brigade Head Quarters. The Directorate undertakes prosecution at the two above-mentioned Courts.

The Special Offences courts were created to try various environmental offences and other offences created by enactments set out in Schedule one of the Special Offences courts Law, Laws of Lagos State 2003. These include offences created under;

  1. Environmental Sanitation Law, Cap E.5, Vol. 2, Laws of Lagos State 2003.
  2. Street Trading and Illegal Markets (Prohibition) Law Cap S.12, Vol.7 Laws Of Lagos State, 2003.
  3. Sand, Laterite and Gravel Spilling (Prohibition) Law, Cap S.5,Vol 7, Laws Of Lagos State 2003.
  4. Highway (Removal of Obstruction) Law, Cap H.15, Vol. 3 Laws of Lagos State 2003
  5. Private Hospital Law, Cap P.15, Vol 6, Laws of Lagos State 2003
  6. Criminal Code, Sections 249,250,252,351.
  7. Road Traffic Law Offences

The Department prosecuted more than 30 Defendants for Road Traffic Laws within the months of this report.

NOTABLE CASES INSTITUTED BY DIRECTORATE.

 

BREAKDOWN OF ACTION TAKEN ON CASE FILES RECEIVED FROM THE POLICE:

NO OF CASES:……………………………………..1003

LEGAL ADVICE ISSUED:………………………560

HOMICIDE CASES: ……………………….142

ROBBERY CASES: ………………………..431

MISCELLANEOUS CASES: ………………143

SEXUAL OFFENCES:………………………160

FATAL MOTOR ACCIDENT:……………….127

 

BREAKDOWN OF APPEALS (FROM JUDGMENTS AND RULINGS).

1(a) NO OF CASES IN THE COURT OF APPEAL……………..122

1(b) NO OF JUDGMENTS…………………………………………………….13

2(a) NO OF CASES IN THE SUPREME COURT…………………..39

2(b) NO OF JUDGMENTS……………………………………………………….0

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