- Yunusa Dahiru has been accused of kidnapping and exploiting a 13-year-old girl
- Mr. Dahiru is also facing charges for forcing the girl to convert to Islamic religion
- The accused has pleaded guilty insisting the girl converted her religion voluntarily
A Nigerian court has charged a man with kidnapping and sexually exploiting a 13-year-old girl he allegedly married in the northern city of Kano.
The man named, Yunusa Dahiru pleaded not guilty to the charges in front of a judge in southern Bayelsa state's capital, Yenagoa.
The family of the girl, named only as Ese, alleged that Mr Dahiru abducted her last August and forced her to convert to Islam before marrying her but Mr. Dahiru says Ese converted from Christianity voluntarily.
Ese's family say they made several efforts to bring her back home to Bayelsa from Kano city, which is 900km (600 miles) to the north, but were told she was no longer their daughter.
Police found the girl last week after a social media campaign to free her.The trial will resume on 14 March for Mr Dahiru's bail application.
Last week, police said officers who delayed investigating Ese's release would also be prosecuted but it is not yet clear when and where they will be charged.
Two other people were charged in absentia for conspiring to abduct the girl.