The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Wednesday arraigned the immediate past Commissioner for Finance in Kwara State, Ademola Banu, at the Federal High Court, Ilorin, for alleged money laundering.
Banu was arraigned alongside a firm, Travel Messenger Company Limited and one Olarewaju Adeniyi on a nine-count charge of fraud and money laundering.
The Commission alleged that the defendants conspired to launder the sum of N411 million belonging to the Kwara State Government.
The charges read: “That you, Olarewaju Adeniyi, Ademola Banu and Travel Messenger Limited between January to December 2018 in Ilorin within the jurisdiction of this honourable Court conspired among yourselves to commit an offence, to with: conversion of the sum of N411,000,000.00 only property of Kwara State Government, which sum you reasonably ought to know was derived from fraud, and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 18(a) of the money laundering (prohibition) (amendment) act, 2012 and punishable under section 15(3) and (4) of the same act.”
The defendants pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Counsel to the EFCC, Nnaemeka Omew, told Justice Babangana Ashigar that following the not guilty plea entered by the accused persons, the prosecution would ask the court to give a trial date to enable it to prove its case against the defendants.
Omew also urged the court to remand the persons in the federal government’s Correctional Facility in the state pending the hearing and determination of the case.
The defence counsels, Gboyega Oyewole and Bamidele Ibironke, however, urged the court to grant bail to the accused persons in the most liberal terms.
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