N82 m fraud: EFCC fails to se­cure bench war­rant against trans­porter

Daily Trust - - NEWS - From Nu­rudeen Oye­wole, La­gos

An Ikeja High Court yes­ter­day re­fused to grant a re­quest by the Eco­nomic and Fi­nan­cial Crimes Com­mis­sion (EFCC) to is­sue a bench war­rant for the ar­rest of a pop­u­lar trans­porter and owner of Cross Coun­try, Bube Oko­ro­dudu.

In his rul­ing, Jus­tice La­teef Lawal-Akapo dis­missed the ap­pli­ca­tion, which was filed by the EFCC coun­sel, Mr Em­manuel Jack­son.

The EFCC had re­quested for the war­rant, fol­low­ing Oko­ro­dudu’s re­fusal to ap­pear be­fore the court to take his plea.

Oko­ro­dudu and his trans­port firm, Cross Coun­try Ltd, are charged with al­leged N82.8 mil­lion theft. They are charged along­side an­other com­pany, Car Link Ltd. They are fac­ing an eight-count charge of con­spir­acy, steal­ing and forgery.

In the rul­ing, the judge held that an ac­cused pres­ence was not manda­tory at the hear­ing of a pre­lim­i­nary ob­jec­tion.

“The Court of Ap­peal held that the pres­ence of the ac­cused can be dis­pensed with pend­ing the hear­ing and de­ter­mi­na­tion of the ap­pli­ca­tion chal­leng­ing the charge. The lower court is bound by the de­ci­sion of the higher court. There­fore, the in­vi­ta­tion to is­sue the bench war­rant is de­clined and the ap­pli­ca­tion is hereby re­fused,” he said.

Lawal-Akapo ad­journed un­til May 7, for hear­ing of Oko­ro­dudu’s ap­pli­ca­tion chal­leng­ing the ju­ris­dic­tion of the court.

In the ap­pli­ca­tion, the EFCC al­leged that the ac­cused stole the money through the fraud­u­lent sale of 17 units of Volk­swa­gen trans­porter buses, be­long­ing to AG Moeller Ltd and Mr Ade­loye Olukemi.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Nigeria

© PressReader. All rights reserved.