A High Court in the northern Nigeria has sentenced a man to death by hanging for the kidnapping for ransom and killing of his five-year-old nephew in 2019.

The 19-year-old man had denied the charges. Witnesses say he looked sombre as the death sentence was handed down.

A spokesperson for Kano State’s judiciary told the BBC it appeared the convicted man had killed the boy as he feared he had been recognised.

Nigeria is struggling to tackle a wave of kidnappings for ransom by organised gangs and opportunistic criminals.

Earlier this week, security forces in the northern state of Bauchi arrested two men for allegedly kidnapping and subsequently killing a five-year-old girl after collecting a ransom from her family.