IGUH, J.S.C. (Delivering the Leading Judgment): The appellants, Silas Ikpo and Chigozie Ikpo, as 2nd and 3rd accused persons, along with seven others were arraigned before the High Court of Rivers State, holden at Ahoada, charged with the offence of murder contrary to Section 319 of the Criminal Code. The particulars of the offence charged are as follows:-
"Mark B. Ikpo, Silas Ikpo, Chigozie Ikpo, Gospect Ikpo. Christian Tobiah, Evison Ikpo, Ahanam Ikpo, Herbert Aloni and James Abraham on the 17th day of January, 1983 at Ochigba Village in the Ahoada Judicial Division, murdered Stephen Biogbo.
Each of the accused persons pleaded not guilty to the charge and the prosecution called a total of seven witnesses at the trial. The accused persons gave evidence in their own defence but called no witnesses.
The substance of the case as presented by the prosecution was that the accused persons, labouring under the misapprehension that the deceased had invoked some juju spell on the Ikpo family…