A businesswoman, Linda Mabi-Praise, was on Tuesday arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) before the Lagos State Special Offences Court for allegedly defrauding a lawyer, Unoma Omo, of N165.5m.
According to the commission, the defendant who was charged on two counts on procuring money under fallacious acts and stealing, which she pleaded not guilty to, committed the crimes between April and June 2017 in Lagos.
Frank Ofoma, EFCC prosecutor informed the court that the sum of N34.1m belonging to Omo was meant for lifting and supply of Automotive Gas Oil, before it was fraudulently stolen and converted by the suspect and her company.
Mabi-Praise’s counsel, A. A. Adetunji asked the judge to grant the defendant bail on general terms.
“She is ready to make herself available to the honourable court during the pendency of this trial. Upon hearing that there was a charge against her, she willingly submitted herself to the EFCC and she has reliable sureties willing to stand for her and produce her during the pendency of this matter,” Adetunji said.
While reacting to the submission made by the defence counsel, Ofoma urged the court to disregard Mabi-Praise’s bail application and hoped for a quicker trial.
The presiding judge, Justice Sherifat Solebo, who declared bail of twenty-five million naira with two sureties in like sum, ordered that the sureties be resident in Lagos with proof of tax payment.
She adjourned the case till March 25 for trial after issuing an order for the defendant to be remanded in prison custody pending the improvement and completion of the bail conditions.
By Todimu Ogunade…
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