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Midwife gets N50,000 bail for selling newborn baby for N250,000

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A Lagos Magistrate ’ s Court sitting in Ikeja has granted a quack midwife , Regina Ibeto , bail in the sum of N 50 , 000 following her arraignment for selling a newly born baby .Ibeto , 50 , was arraigned alongside three others , Joy James , Gold Chukwunonye and Nkiru Ekezie , on two counts of child stealing .

It was gathered that the mother of the baby , one 16 – year – old Bukky , gave birth to the child on March 17 , 2018 at Ibeto ’ s unregistered centre on Bunmi Ajakaye Street , Ajangbadi , Lagos .

Bukky , who was reportedly impregnated by her stepfather, was taken to the centre by James with an arrangement to sell the baby upon delivery .

Less than a week after the birth , the midwife reportedly sold the baby to one Nkechi through her friend , Ekezie , and Nkechi ’ s elder sister , Chukwunonye , for N 250 , 000 .

James reportedly got N 30 , 000 from the proceeds .

Saturday PUNCH learnt that a neighbour of the midwife , who got wind of the criminal deal , tipped off the police and four of the suspects were arrested while others were at large .

Ibeto said she sold the baby , who had been recovered , because Bukky told her she was impregnated by her father , and wanted to do away with the baby .

She said , “ I was at home when a friend brought Bukky who was due for labour . Bukky told me how his father impregnated her and said she wanted to abort the pregnancy because it was a product of abomination .

“ I asked her if she really meant what she said and she answered in the affirmative . I felt it would be an abomination if people got to know about the issue. I also felt she was too young for the stigma .

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“ Luckily , Bukky was delivered of a boy and we sold him to Chukwunonye . I gave Bukky part of the money to start a new life and advised her to stay away from her father . She left and Chukwunonye took the baby boy.

“ I do not think I did anything bad . I only helped the young girl who was in confusion . The police later came to arrest me , accusing me of inducing pregnant women to deliver . I only assist women in labour to deliver their babies . ”

Ekezie , a mother of six , who hails from the Ekwusigo Local Government Area of Anambra State, told the police that although the money for the baby was paid into her account by Nkechi , she did not get any share .

The 38 -year – old said Nkechi had been barren for 18 years and had wanted to adopt the baby , adding that she was only trying to help her .

She said , “ Mrs . Ibeto is my friend . She called me on the telephone that a woman gave birth at her centre and that I should find a buyer for the baby . I called my friend , Nkechi , who lives in Imo State if she was interested in the baby . She agreed to buy the baby .

“ She sent N 250 , 000 into my account . Out of the sum , N 30 , 000 was for the upkeep of the baby pending when he would be taken to Imo . I withdrew the money and gave it to Chukwunonye , who paid to Mrs . Ibeto and collected the baby . The arrangement was that Chukwunonye would take care of the baby for one month . Nkechi has been barren for 18 years and I thought I was doing her good. ”

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Chukwunonye , 45 , explained that she agreed to buy the baby on behalf of her sister after Ibeto assured her that it would not backfire .

She said the nurse had told her that the father of the baby was blind and was in dire need of money for treatment .

A police prosecutor , Inspector Ben Emuerhi, on Tuesday , brought the four arrested suspects before an Ikeja Magistrate ’ s Court on two counts of stealing .

The charges read , “ That you Joy James , Regina Ibeto , Gold Chukwunonye and Nkiru Ekezie , on May 17 , 2018 at 96 , Bunmi Ajakaiye Street , Shibiri, Lagos , in the Lagos Magisterial District , did conspire among yourselves to commit felony to wit ; child stealing , thereby committing an offence punishable under Section 411 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015 .

“ That you , Joy James , Regina Ibeto , Gold Chukwunonye and Nkiru Ekezie , on the same date , time and place in the aforementioned magisterial district , did fraudulently take away one baby from her biological mother , thereby committing an offence punishable under Section 277 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015 . ”

The defendants , however , pleaded not guilty to the charges and elected summary trial .

The presiding magistrate , Mrs . O . Sule -Amuzat, granted them bail in the sum of N 50 , 000 with one surety in like sum and adjourned the case till July 11 , 2018 for mention .

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