Court Or­ders Ex-Air Force Chief, Amosu to For­feit N2.2bn to FG

THISDAY - - NEWSXTRA -

Davidson Iriekpen

The Fed­eral High Court in La­gos has or­dered the tem­po­rary for­fei­ture of N2.2bil­lion re­cov­ered from for­mer Chief of Air Staff, Air Mar­shal Ades­ola Amosu.

Jus­tice Mo­jisola Ola­tore­gun made the or­der based on an ex-parte ap­pli­ca­tion filed by the Eco­nomic and Fi­nan­cial Crimes Com­mis­sion (EFCC).

The judge ruled: “An in­terim or­der is made for­feit­ing to the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment of Nige­ria the to­tal sum of N2,244,500,000 found and re­cov­ered by the com­mis­sion from the first re­spon­dent (Amosu) which sum is rea­son­ably sus­pected to be pro­ceeds of un­law­ful ac­tiv­ity.”

The judge also granted an in­terim or­der for the tem­po­rary for­fei­ture of N190,828,978.15 re­cov­ered from a for­mer Nige­ria Air Force Direc­tor of Fi­nance and Bud­get, Air Com­modore Olug­benga Gbadebo.

Jus­tice Ola­tore­gun also or­dered tem­po­rary for­fei­ture of N101 mil­lion re­cov­ered from Solomon En­ter­prises, a com­pany linked to Amosu.

EFCC said the sum “is rea­son­ably sus­pected to be pro­ceeds of un­law­ful ac­tiv­ity.”

The judge di­rected EFCC to pub­lish the in­terim or­der in The Na­tion and Punch news­pa­pers for the re­spon­dents or any­one in­ter­ested to show cause why the fi­nal or­der of for­fei­ture should not be made in favour of the fed­eral gov­ern­ment.

Jus­tice Ola­tore­gun made the or­der on June 7 af­ter the ex-parte ap­pli­ca­tion was moved by the EFCC’s lawyer, Mr. Ro­timi Oyedepo.

The judge ad­journed un­til June 29.

The de­fen­dants were ac­cused of us­ing the com­pa­nies to con­vert and con­ceal the money.

Amosu and Adi­gun were said to have, be­tween July 17 and Septem­ber 16, 2014, al­legedly re­moved huge over N663.4mil­lion from the Nige­rian Air Force ac­counts to pur­chase prop­er­ties at 5052 Ten­ter­den Grove, Lon­don (NW4 1TH) and at 93B Shire­hall Park, Lon­donNW4 2QU, United King­dom.

They were ac­cused of buy­ing 40A, Bour­dil­lon, Ikoyi, with N900mil­lion, and a prop­erty at Si­nari Daranijo in Vic­to­ria Is­land with N1.5bil­lion.

EFCC said they also bought a prop­erty named as Cap­padol Mall at Adetokunbo Ade­mola Street, Wuse II Abuja, for N750mil­lion, as well as a prop­erty worth over N1.7bil­lion at Agob­ogba Street, Parkview, Ikoyi La­gos, us­ing the air­force’s money.

Other prop­er­ties they al­legedly bought us­ing air force’s funds in­clude one at Salt Lake Street, Maitama, Abuja; one at Agadez Street off Aminu Kano Cres­cent, Abuja; 61A, Lake Chad Street, Maitama, Abuja; and one at one, River Street, Wuse II Abuja us­ing al­leged stolen funds.

Be­tween last March 6 and April 30, the ac­cused al­legedly used N428,139,539.00 re­moved from the ac­counts of the Nige­rian Air Force to ren­o­vate and pur­chase medical equip­ment for Solomon Health­Care Ltd sit­u­ate at 24th Adeniyi Jones Street, Ikeja La­gos.

EFCC said the ac­cused per­sons con­verted and con­cealed the sums, which they “rea­son­ably ought to have known forms part of the pro­ceeds of an un­law­ful act, to wit: steal­ing.”

They all pleaded not guilty.

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