Home Features Corruption: Prosecutor stalls trial of ex-AGF, Judge adjourns till August 13

Corruption: Prosecutor stalls trial of ex-AGF, Judge adjourns till August 13

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A file photo of former AGF, Mr Mohammed Adoke.

The trial judge, Justice Iyang Ekwo of the Federal High Court, in corruption case against ex-Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Mohammed Adoke has adjourned proceedings due to late filling of amended charges and failure to serve the defendants with the proof of evidence and statement of the witness.

The failure of the prosecutor according to the trial Judge, to serve amended charges against Adoke, who was arraigned alongside an Abuja based businessman, Aliyu Abubakar, was thereby stalled.

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During the last sitting, the former Minister and Abubakar pleaded not guilty to a 14-count charge filed against them bordering on money laundering.

In June, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had filed an additional seven charges against the former AGF over money laundering allegations involving about N400 million.

The trial, which was expected to begin last week but stalled due to the amended charges, bordered on an initial charge of seven counts, with six of them relating to ex-Minister Adoke.

Earlier in the proceedings today, the prosecutor, Bala Sanga, disclosed to the court of an amended charge he filed on July 29 which was served on all the defendants.

In the former seven counts, the EFCC alleged that the defendants committed the money laundering offences involving over N400 million in Abuja, in September 2013.

In the counts relating to Mr Adoke, he was accused of among others, receiving the dollar equivalent of N300 million from Abubakar, paying the dollar equivalent of N367,318,800 to one Usman Mohammed Bello, and allegedly using the sum of N300 million, which was alleged to be part of the proceeds of unlawful activities, all in violations of various provisions of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act, 2011.

Other accusations against Adoke include: “structured cash payments, in 22 tranches”, which amounted to N80 million, another of such structured payments in 13 tranches amounting to N50 million into his Unity Bank account.

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The EFCC alleged that the funds were not only part of the proceeds of unlawful acts but they also exceeded “thresholds outside a financial institution,” adding that the payments were done with the intention of concealing the origins of the funds contrary to Section 15(2(a) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act 2011 and punishable under section 15(3) of the same law.

On February 10, Adoke was granted bail by the Federal High Court in Abuja in the sum of N50m with one surety in like sum.

The trial would resume on adjourned date of August 13, 2020.

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