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Court dismisses Patience Jonathan’s human rights suit

By Zulaykha Abodunrin, 

A court has ruled that the fundamental human rights suit filed against the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission by wife of former first lady, Patience Jonathan is null.

Justice Tsoho of Fed High Court Abuja, on Tuesday, dismissed the suit filed against the agency.

 

…details later.

EFCC assures security agencies of forensic assistance

By Balogun Alabi,

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has assured that it was ready to offer assistance to other law enforcement agencies in solving complicated crime cases through the use of crime scene technology, known as ‘Forensic’.

It explained that had commenced its regular refresher training of forensic experts in the Commission, in order to train its personnel on the new tactics.

According to EFCC, the personnel would be trained on use of crime scene technology so that it would enhance professionalism and expertise.

While speaking at a refresher training workshop on the use of crime scene technology organized for forensic experts of the Commission in Abuja on Wednesday, EFCC Head, Forensic and Crime Laboratory Services Departmen, Ben Ikani, noted that there were only two crime scene technology experts with experience in blood stain analysis in Nigeria.

Ikani, who spoke through a Senior Detective Superintendent, Churchill Torru, said that there was the need for continuous training for transfer of knowledge to other experts.

He explained that the one-day intensive practical training had six officers of the Commission in attendance.

In his remark, the Forensic Department and a trainer at the workshop, Tijani Ismail, disclosed that the training was organized to keep participants current on the latest devices and the proper techniques for acquiring and analyzing data to combat the modern day crimes.

Ismail, who called on other agencies to take advantage of the EFCC’s expertise in the use of crime scene technology in solving complex crime cases, indicated that, the Nigeria Police, Army, ICPC and FIRS had already benefited from the gesture through inter-agency collaboration.

EFCC urges public to support fight against corruption

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Port Harcourt zonal office in Rivers State, has urged members of the public to support the commission in fight against corruption practices by supplying the commission with credible information, as it would be of benefit to development of the country.

It noted that fighting against corruption was a public responsibility of patriotic Nigerians and it would be more effective if citizens harmonies as one.

While addressing artisans, including traders and other interest groups at the Mile One Market area of Port Harcourt on Monday, the commission’s Zonal head in the state, Isha Salihu, explained that in order to progress the country, masses have to show a helping hand.

“We must come together to tackle the cancer of corruption. Fighting corrupt practices has become a national project. It is now a civic responsibility and an engagement that cannot be wished away.

“There is a nexus between corruption and infrastructural problems in Nigeria. There is a nexus between corruption and bad roads; between corruption and non- functional hospitals and other institutions that are not working well. If we come together to tackle this monster, Nigeria will move forward faster than we can imagine”, he said.

Salihu who assured that any person found engaging in corrupt practices would not go unpunished, itemised some of the items the commission was able to recover from offenders and praised the public for utilizing the whistle blowing strategy to unravel evil deeds.

“We are moving forward. The EFCC has shown that every act of corruption can never go un- punished. Money is being recovered and assets are being forfeited to the government. I want to encourage you to be more forth coming with information. The Whistle- Blowing Act has lots of benefits to informants,” he said.

Court orders arrest of Ex-Enugu Governor over alleged N4.5bn laundering

By Balogun Alabi

A federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos State has ordered the arrest of a former governor of Enugu State, Chimaroke Nnamani for allegedly failing to appear in court since 2015 for his re-arraignment over allegations by the Economic and Financial Crimes commission that Nnamani laundered about N4.5billion.

It was learnt that Nnamami alongside one of his aides, Sunday Anyaogu, and six firms Rainbownet (Nig) Limited, Hillgate (Nigeria) Limited, Cosmo FM, Capital City Automobile (Nigeria) Limited, Renaissance University Teaching Hospital and Mea Mater Elizabeth High School had been arraigned in 2007 over the same offence.

The former governor was said alleged to have conspired with the other defendants to launder statutory allocations of some local government areas in the state, which resulted to him facing a 10 count charge of money laundry.

However, on the part of his alleged conspirators including the companies, they pleaded guilty to the charges put against them, but the charges against the former governor and his former aide was said to be stalled continuously due to alleged frequent travel to abroad by Nnamani to treat a heart ailment.

Justifying the reason for the Nnamani’s frequent travel yesterday before the high court judge, Chuka Obiozor, the defence counsel, Shamsudeen Abubakar, told the judge that his sick and bedridden client had undergone a heart surgery in the United States of America and he’s recuperating in hospital.

The prosecuting councel to EFCC, Kelvin Uzozie, in reply, argued that the photographic evidence provided by the defence lawyer to prove Nnamani’s recuperation in a US hospital had been in circulation since 2014.

Justice Chuka stated that the Nnamani’s counsel has failed to give a ‘tenable reason’ why his client  stopped attending trial since 2015 when his surgery was only last month, as the defnse counsel said that it was the period the companies pleaded guilty to the charges.

Meanwhile, the fourth judge, Justice Obiozor, who would be handling the case, warned the defense lawyer that he would not tolerate any attempt to further delay the trial and ordered the arrest Nnamani’s aide and co-accused, Sunday Anyaogu.

EFCC trains NSE staffs on anti-graft strategies

By Balogun Alabi

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has disclosed that it has commenced a five-day training for officers of the Nigerian stock exchange, to boost anti-graft war in the country.

As learnt, the training themed “Basic Investigation Training” was part of capacity building, collaboration, exchange of knowledge and skills between the two agencies in compliance with an existing Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), signed by the two bodies in 2013.

While speaking at the EFCC academy in Karu Abuja, the training coordinator, S.U. Sanusi, said that the training was designed to cover aspects of operations of both agencies

The coordinator said that the aspect of operations would be in line with Acting EFCC chairman, Ibrahim Magu’s determination towards enhancing the competence of investigating officers with aim of achieving foolproof investigations that would stand the test of prosecution in the Law court.

“The two agencies through this relationship rely on each other to conduct investigations of financial crimes especially on areas such as capital market fraud, insider abuse, securities/investment fraud amongst others” he said.

He stressed further that the training borders around investigative approach of the EFCC, intelligence gathering, cybercrime, digital and document forensics, money laundering, asset tracing/network analysis, corruption studies, inter-agency co-operation, overview of the Laws enforced by the EFCC amongst others.

“We at EFCC have enjoyed similar trainings from the NSE in areas of Capital market operations” he noted.

EFCC arraigns man for advanced fee fraud

By Balogun Alabi

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Kaduna Zonal Office, has arraigned a man, Linus Ogbonna, on one count charge of criminal breach of trust.

According to reports, Ogbonna, a business man, who deals in Aluminum roofing sheets with a company named Cornerstone Aluminum Limited was arrested after he received 990 square metres of the said product valued at N2,830,000 from the complainant for onward supply to Jaji Military Cantonment Kaduna.

He ran into trouble when he could only pay N700,000 to the suppliers while efforts to get the balance remained futile.

Following the complaint, the EFCC swung into action and arraigned him on Monday before Justice Tukur of the State High Court Kaduna on one count charge bordering on Criminal Breach of Trust.

Count one reads: “That you Linus Ogbonna “M” sometime in February 2017, Kaduna within the Judicial Division of this court with intent to defraud obtained property to wit; roofing sheets worth N2, 830,000 from one Yunusa Abubakar under the false pretence that you would pay him on delivery which you fail to do and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1 (1) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under section 1 (3) of the same Act”.

While the defender pleaded not guilty to the charge, prosecuting counsel Onyeka Okweozo, urged the court to fix a date for hearing of the matter.

The defence counsel M.C Adoku urged the court to grant accused bail.

However, Tukur adjourned ruling on his bail application to December 1, 2017 and February 1, 2018 for commencement of trial.

EFCC arrests 191 suspects, recovers N110,820m

By Newsdesk

The anti-graft war embarked upon by President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration has continued to yield result with Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), disclosing that no fewer than 191 suspects have been arrested this year.

Also, the anti-corruption agency added that it recovered N110,820,023 million from the suspects that were arrested between January and July in North-East zone.

EFCC’s head of Operations in the zone, Aminu Aliyu, disclosed the statistics on suspect and funds recovered at a press briefing in Gombe on Tuesday.

Aliyu said the amount recovered from suspects under investigations are: N79,074, 743.53 in bank drafts and N31,745,280 in cash.

The head of operations hinted that the office had also secured seven convictions of those arraigned in various courts, while concluding investigation into 54 other cases.

He however expressed the commission’s commitment to tackle economic and financial crimes by securing conviction of criminals and sensitising the public to the evil deeds of fraudsters in the society.

The zonal head further appealed to Nigerians not to desist from reporting activities of any suspects in both private and public sectors.

Appeal court upholds businessmen two-year jail term, forfeiture of $2.5m

By NewsDesk

A Court of Appeal sitting in Lagos has upheld the ruling of a Federal High Court sitting in Lagos which sentenced a businessman, Ngene Chibuike, to two years imprisonment, just as it ordered the forfeiture of an undeclared sum of $2.5 million to Federal Government.

The judgement of the Appellate Court came months after Justice I.N Buba of the Federal High Court Lagos, convicted and sentenced the accused to two years imprisonment.

It would be recalled that the convict was arrested two years ago at Murtala Muhammed International Airport as he try to travel to China en-route Addis Ababa, Ethiopia with an undeclared sum of $2.5 million.

However, he was arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), two years ago on one count charge for falsely declaring the sum of $11,500, instead of $2,506,998 million, he had in his possession to the officers of the Nigeria Customs Service as required under the provision of Section 2(3) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended by Act No.1 of 2012) and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 2(5) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011(as amended by Act No. 1 of 2012)”

Chibuike had pleaded not guilty to the charge, an action which led to the matter been sent to full trial. But during trial, Buba found him guilty and sentenced him to two years imprisonment but the convict approached the court of appeal for reprieve.

The prosecution counsel, Ekele Iheanacho thanked the appellate court for affirming the judgment of the lower court in the interest of justice.

EFCC deny investigating Senator Makarfi, warns public against misinformation

By NewsDesk

Following a purported report on social media, that $42 million was found in Senator Ahmed Makarfi, ffarm by Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the commission has denied the report and warned social media mercenaries against misinformation.

It was gathered that after the Supreme Court judgment in the case of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), where it ruled in favour of the Makarfi’s faction, and less than two hours after the Supreme Court judgment, the duo of Innocent Onyekachi Oritsetimeyin Akpotedja Adejenuhgure and Adeola Sam Opeyemi, posted on their Facebook Timeline that $42 million was found in the house of the senator by the EFCC.

Meanwhile, in statement signed by the Head, Media and Publicity, Wilson Uwujaren, and made available to newsmen on Friday, the commission denied the false report on Makrafi and described it as misleading and misinformation.

“We have considered it necessary to set the records straight and to advice social media activists to be wary of Adjenuhgure and Opeyemi who are out to sow seed of discord among Nigerians as there is no EFCC investigation on Senator Makarfi,” the statement reads.

According to the statement, the general public should be wary of the activities of the duo of Innocent Onyekachi, Oritsetimeyin Akpotedja Adejenuhgure and Adeola Sam Opeyemi, who have been misleading Nigerians with false information about the activities of the Commission.

“Barely six hours after the Supreme Court judgment in the case of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), where it ruled in favour of the Senator Ahmed Makarfi’s faction, Adjenuhgure posted in his Facebook Timeline that $42 million was found in Sen. Makarfi’s farm by the EFCC, “less than 2 hours after the Supreme Court judgment,” the statement added.

EFCC stated in the statement that while many unsuspecting Nigerians shared the unfounded post, others simply copied and reposted as original, which generated myriad of reactions suggestive that the Commission was a tool in the hands of the Executive to further destabilize the PDP.

“Following efforts by the Commission to correct the erroneous and misleading information through its social media platforms, some who had no ulterior motive apologized and deleted the post. Sadly, ADJENUHGURE and OPEYEMI stood their grounds as they insisted that the story was true”, the statement said.

“We have considered it necessary to set the records straight and to advice social media activists to be wary of ADJENUHGURE and OPEYEMI who are out to sow seed of discord among Nigerians as there is no EFCC investigation on Senator Makarfi,”.

Police invades former attorney-General’s home in Kogi

By NewsDesk

Atleast 20 policemen stormed former Attorney General of the federation, Mohammed Adoke, home in Okene, Kogi state and ransacked every room in the building.

It was gathered that the team arrived the home of the senior advocate with a search warrant from Abuja on Friday, at about 3pm and left  after two hours of search.

 

According to police source, the officers stormed the house with intention to recover money and unspecified documents during the search that lasted for two hours.

Eyewitness narrated that the policemen after searching the rooms for two hours, also ransacked septic and underground water tanks but unfortunately, the search team could not find anything incriminating and promptly asked the guards on duty to sign a form confirming that they did not take anything away.

It would be recalled that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), is on the trail of Adoke, concerning the scam in federal government’s transfer of OPL 245 from Malabu Oil and Gas Ltd to Shell and ENI for a fee of $1.3 billion, including $210 million signature bonus paid to the federation account.

EFCC also accused Adoke of money laundering, but the former attorney general denied the allegations, pointing out that he was being witch-hunted.

Meanwhile, search by security agencies in the house of the ex-AGF, with previous ones carried out in The Hague, Kano and his brother’s house in Okene, have been a routine actions.

It would also be recalled that EFCC, once carried out two raids in Nigeria, and in each raid nothing was found.