The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Wednesday re-arraigned the former Attorney General of the Federation, Mohammed Adoke in court on fresh charges.
He was re-arraigned alongside Mr. Aliyu Abubakar before a Federal High Court in Abuja on money laundering related charges.
The EFCC re-arraigned them on a seven-count charge, marked FHC/ABJ/CR/39/2017.
While six counts in the charge related to Adoke the remaining one was against Abubakar.
The commission accused the defendants of offences, involving about N400 million, in Abuja in September 2013.
Adoke was accused of among others, receiving the US dollar equivalent of N300 million from Abubakar and paying the dollar equivalent of N367,318,800 to one Usman Mohammed Bello.
He was said to have used N300 million, which was alleged to be part of the proceeds of unlawful activities, acts classified as offences under the Money Laundering Prohibition Act 2011.
Adoke was also accused of making “structured cash payments in 22 tranches” amounting to N80 million, and another of such structured payments in 13 tranches, estimated at N50 million, into his Unity Bank account.
Abubakar, on his part was accused of making a payment of US dollar equivalent of N300 million into Adoke’s account, in violation of the money laundering law.
The defendants pleaded not guilty when the charge was read to them.
Afterward, the lead prosecution lawyer, Bala Sanga said he would have applied for the remand of the defendants in prison but for the reality of the coronavirus pandemic.
Sanga, noting that the prosecution was not served any bail application on behalf of any of the defendants, said he would not oppose should lawyers to the defendants apply for bail orally.
Counsel to Adoke, Kanu Agabi (SAN), and Akin Olujinmi (SAN), who appeared for Abubakar, noted that the case was transferred from Justice Binta Nyako’s court where the defendants were arraigned in February this year and granted bail.
They, therefore, prayed the court to allow the defendants to continue to enjoy the bail earlier granted them, a request the new judge, Justice Inyang Ekwo acceded to.
Sanga later prayed the court for a short adjournment for the commencement of trial to enable the prosecution prove its case.
He said, “We hope to open and close this case on time. Our witnesses are within jurisdiction, and we do not intend to call more than five witnesses,” Sanga said.
Justice Ekwo later adjourned to August 3, for commencement of trial.
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