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$1.6BN FRAUD: EFCC files 15 fresh charges against Diezani’s associate Omokore, others

Court rules on admissibility of defendants’ evidence in Diezani associate Omokore’s trial November25

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Monday filed additional 15 criminal charges against Jide Omokore and others.

Among the others include two of his companies: Atlantic Energy Brass Limited and Atlantic Energy Drilling Concept Limited, Victor Briggs and Membere Abiye.

The charges was filed in their on-going trial before Justice Nnamdi Dimgba of the Federal High Court, Abuja.

They pleaded not guilty to the charges when they were read out to them on Monday.

Omokore is an associate of former minister of petroleum resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke.

He and the other defendants are facing nine-count amended charges from the EFCC that border on alleged money laundering and procurement fraud to the tune of $1.6 billion.

Led in evidence at the Monday’s sitting by prosecution counsel, Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), prosecution witness, Abdulrasheed Bawa, told the court, how huge monetary transactions transpired among the defendants.

The witness, an investigator and data analyst with the EFCC, revealed that sometime in 2013, the EFCC received a complaint from a non-governmental agency urging the Commission to investigate the activities of the former minister of Petroleum, Diezani Alison-Madueke, adding that the transactions involved huge sums of money in United States dollars between the first defendant and his companies in respect of Strategic Alliance Agreement on OML 26, 30, 34 and 42.

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According to the witness, the EFCC received intelligence from Nigeria Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) through the foreign based Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), on the alleged fraudulent transactions in dollars from the second and third defendants to one of their offshore companies.

Explaining further, Bawa told the court that the letters of the investigative activities were sent to NNPC, NPDC, Ministry of Petroleum Resources detailing the EFCC’s reports on the OML 26, 30, 34, 42, 4 38, and 41.

The prosecution witness, further identified exhibit three-30, as correspondences between the EFCC and some of the companies.

Justice Dimgba adjourned the matter until March 23, 2020 for continuation of trial.

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