4.6BILLION NAIRA FRAUD: FANI KAYODE’S TRIAL RESUMES FEB 24

Fani-Kayode

The trial of a former Minister of Aviation, Femi Fani-Kayode, over alleged N4.6 billion fraud would on February 24, 2020, resume before Justice Mohammed Aikawa, of a Federal High Court, Lagos.

Fani-Kayode, a former Minister of State for Finance, Mrs. Esther Nenadi Usman and one Danjuma Yusuf and a firm, Jointrust Dimensions Limited were currently standing trial before the court on a 17-count charge bordering on the alleged offence.

Further hearing in the trial was stalled yesterday owing to the absence of one of the defence lawyers, Clement Onwuenwuenor.

Onwuenwuenor, lawyer to Yusuf and JoinTrust Dimensions Limited, had in a letter he wrote to the court sought for an adjournment, saying that he was before the Court of Appeal in Lagos in respect of three criminal cases.

Consequently, Justice Aikawa adjourned further hearing in the matter to February 24 and 25, 2020.

The anti-graft agency had on May 15, 2017, re-arraigned Fani-Kayode, Usman, Yusuf and Jointrust Limited before Justice Aikawa, on a 17-count charge of alleged N4.6 billion fraud.

Their re-arraignment came two months after another judge of the court, Justice Muslim Sule Hassan, recused himself from the case.

The EFCC, in the charge marked FHC/L/C/251c/2016, accused the defendants of conspiracy, unlawful retention of proceeds of theft and money laundering.

Some of the counts in the charge read thus; “That you, Nnenadi Esther Usman, Femi Fani-Kayode, Danjuma Yusuf And Jointrust Dimentions Nigeria Limited on or about the 8th day of January, 2015, within the jurisdiction of this honourable court conspired among yourselves to indirectly retain the sum of N1,500, 000,000.00 (One Billion, Five Hundred Million Naira), which sum you reasonably ought to have known forms part of the proceeds of an unlawful act to wit: stealing, and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 18(a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) (Amendment) Act, 2012 and punishable under Section 15(3) & 4 of the same Act.

“That you, Nnenadi Esther Usman, Danjuma Yusuf And Jointrust Dimentions Nigeria Limited on or about the 9th day of January, 2015, within the jurisdiction of this honourable court in Nigeria indirectly retained the sum of N300,000,000.00 (Three Hundred Million Naira), which sum you reasonably ought to have known forms part of the proceeds of an unlawful act to wit: corruption, and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 15(2)(d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) (Amendment) Act, 2012 and punishable under Section 15(3) & 4 of the same Act.

However, the defendants had pleaded not guilty to the charge levelled against them.