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[Lates News] Suspected of 250 million euros: defense lawyer absent, defendant’s trial blocked.

EFCC, FRSC deepen anti-corruption cooperation


The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) have pledged to deepen cooperation to eradicate corruption in Nigeria and reduce carnage on the country’s highways.

The culmination of discussions was when the Commander, EFCC Ilorin Sector Command, Michael Nzekwe, hosted the Sector Commander, FRSC, RS8.1 Kwara Command, Fredrick Ade Ogidan, at a committee meeting on Thursday, September 21, 2023. Office, GRA, Ilorin.

Commenting on the substance of the visit, C C Ogidan said, “It is important for government agencies to work together to make Nigeria a better place for all”. He specified that “collaboration between the EFCC and the FRSC is necessary as the task of restoring integrity to Nigeria and restoring sanity to the country’s roads through the war on corruption falls on these two institutions”.

He noted that “one of the major problems facing the country is corruption,” noting that “anyone who does not support the efforts advocated by the EFCC to rid the country of corruption is unpatriotic.”

The Theater Commander commended the Ilorin Area Command of the Commission for its compliance with safety rules and regulations. “I would like to commend you for the invitation you extended to us a few weeks ago to train your officers on basic highway safety rules and regulations. This is very commendable! If you have any other areas where you need our support, our doors Always open for you,” he promises.

In his speech, Nzekwe commended the FRSC for its support to the committee.

“We know the importance of the Federal Road Safety Corps in the fight against corruption. This is the agency that we really need to work with to enable us to succeed. In some cases, we have to rely on road safety because they save Nigeria People’s records, particularly vehicle registrations and the issuance of driving licenses, this information often comes in handy during investigations,” he said.

Nzekwe tasked the FRSC to continue supporting the EFCC, especially in the area of ​​intelligence sharing.

Suspended CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele and other top officials of the bank may eventually face trial.

This comes after plea bargaining efforts between the federal government and Emefiele stalled.

Emefiele and the affected top bank officials “have made no material concessions on some of the refunds they expected”.
Sources said trillions of naira are being traced by federal agencies, but some persons linked to suspicious transactions have only offered billions of naira as refundable amounts.

Some plea forces and Emefiele have yet to make progress on the terms of a plea deal.

Malacañang is alarmed by the “massive fraud and blatant violation of the CBN Act”.
After an intervention, the government’s investigation, initially coordinated by security agencies, recommended a plea bargain with Emefiele, which he also wanted.

Although Emefiele resigned in August, other aspects of the plea bargain process “were not materially satisfied.”

A source said: “After being asked about the trillions of naira, some of the affected people only offered to refund about 32 billion naira.

“The involvement of the special investigators also uncovered greater mismanagement of resources and questionable expenditures by the CBN than some security agencies had unearthed.

“The Special Investigator’s findings uncovered significant levels of corruption.

Suspected of 250 million euros: defense lawyer absent, defendant’s trial blocked

On Friday, September 22, 2023, Judge Mojisola Dada of the Special Offenses Court in Ikeja, Lagos, adjourned the trial of the late Malaysian Tan Ah Chai Richard and his company Coastal Asia Investments Limited for bank fraud. Defrauded the deceased out of more than 250,000,000.00 euros. There is no defense attorney.

Richard and his company were first arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on May 22, 2019, on five counts of forgery, use of a false document, conspiracy to commit forgery and attempting to obtain money by false pretenses. Total €250,000,000.00 (two hundred and fifty million euros).

He pleaded “not guilty” to the charges, prompting the trial to begin and prosecutors to call witnesses.

However, it was reported during the trial that Richard died in prison, necessitating an amendment to the charges.

Therefore, the prosecutor filed revised charges with the court on January 28, 2022.

One of the amended charges read: “Tan Ah Chai Richard (deceased), Coastal Asia Investments Limited and Dr. Sawang Jana (still at large) on or about September 27, 2018, within the jurisdiction of this court in Lagos, With intent to defraud and conspiracy to commit a felony, namely:

the forgery of a Swift telex notification dated September 27, 2018, indicating that the amount of €250,000,000.00 (€250 million) had been transferred to Coastal Asia Investments Limited, Polaris, at HSBC Bank, London, UK Bank Plc account (formerly known as Skye Bank Plc).”

During the proceedings on January 19, 2023, the defense had applied to the court to retry the case, but the application has not yet been sent to the prosecutor.

Finally, on June 9, 2023, defense lawyer A. Onifade filed an application for a hearing.

He cross-examined the prosecution witness called, EFCC investigating officer John Yamah.

During cross-examination, the defense submitted the international passport of the deceased Richard as evidence through witnesses, which was admitted as evidence by the court.

Onifade further asked the witness about “the search records he filled out.”

I didn’t know his home was searched,” the witness responded.

Onifade has since informed the court that the case will be closed.

The court therefore adjourned the hearing to September 22, 2023, to adopt final written submissions.

However, when the case came to court today, the defense attorney was absent.

EFCC lawyer B.M. Issa told the court that the prosecution had not received any suit from the defence.

“The court clerk told me that the defense attorney called to say that he was unavoidably absent today, but they haven’t filed any documents yet,” he said.

Judge Dada therefore adjourned the hearing to November 16, 2023, to pass the final written speech.

INTERPOL seeks EFCC cooperation in fight against organized crime syndicates

INTERPOL seeks to partner with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to target organized crime groups in the West African sub-region.

The request was made on Thursday, September 21, 2023, when a delegation led by Pascal Progin, Coordinator of the Criminal Networks Unit of INTERPOL’s Organized Crime Unit, visited the EFCC Corporate Headquarters, Jabi, Abuja.

Plokin specifically sought the EFCC’s cooperation in the fight against what he called “Nigerian organized crime groups”, stressing that Interpol needed the commission’s expertise, experience and network to make visible progress in breaking the strongholds of these groups.

“Organized crime refers to criminal activity carried out by criminal organizations or groups based in Nigeria or Nigerian criminal networks operating within Nigeria and internationally. This may include cybercrime, human trafficking, drug trafficking, extortion and kidnapping, oil Activities such as theft and illegal weapons trading,” he said.

He further said that these criminal activities often involve the exploitation of vulnerable groups and can cause significant harm to the victims and society as a whole. “There is a need to cooperate with various law enforcement agencies around the world, especially the EFCC, to eliminate this threat”.

EFCC Acting Chairman Abdulkarim Chukkol, reacting through Director of Operations Ibrahim Liman, said the EFCC was ready to cooperate in any form in the fight against criminal activities. “I listened to you and you are right. As law enforcement agencies we have to cooperate.

Today, crime crosses borders. You may have a criminal here, but he could also have committed a crime in France, the United States or elsewhere. Anywhere else. ” Therefore, the need for cooperation cannot be overemphasized. He said cooperation between law enforcement agencies was also very important in combating all forms of crime.

Officials from the EFCC and Progin delegation discussed some technical issues. The INTERPOL Coordinator concluded by stressing that “the purpose of this initiative is to support the identification of members of African organized crime groups within and outside Africa and to link them to their respective criminal groups through enhanced information exchange and the development of tailor-made identification programmes. Get up.” . “Business activities”.

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