Home News N25bn Fraud: Court Gives Verdict on Igbinedion, Others April 17

N25bn Fraud: Court Gives Verdict on Igbinedion, Others April 17

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Justice J. Liman of a Federal High Court in Benin, Edo State, on Tuesday adjourned till April 17, 2015 to deliver judgement in the case of money laundering preferred against Michael Igbinedion, Patrick Eboigbodin and their four companies.

It is the third time that the case has been adjourned.

But Justice Liman, who apologised for the several adjournments, explained that they were due to the prolonged strike by federal judiciary workers, which ended in February, and ill- health.

“I promise that this will be the last adjournment, which will be for a very close date, after lawyers readopt their written addresses,” he was quoted to have said.

Earlier, counsel to the defendants, Ricky Tafa, SAN, and Mike Ozekhome, SAN, who were represented by Abubakar Shamsudeen and Omosede Igbinedion, respectively, re-adopted their written addresses to discharge and acquit their clients, which were first adopted before Justice Liman on November 14, 2014.

Richard Ahonaruogo, also tendered his written address, as one of the counsel to the defendants.

Tayo Olukotun, who held brief for Counsel to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Rotimi Jacobs, SAN, also re-adopted his written address.

Speaking on the essence of re-adoption of written addresses at the end of proceedings, Olukotun said that “the constitutional provision is that after 90 days of adopting written addresses, and no miscarriage of justice, judgement can still be delivered.

“But re-adoption of written addresses by both counsel is advised, to avoid technicalities,” he added.

He also noted that some of the technicalities could become a ground for an appeal.

Eboigbodin and Michael, the younger brother to a former Governor of Edo State, Lucky Igbinedion, and four of their firms: Gava Corporation Limited, Romrig Nigeria Limited, PML Securities Company Limited and PML Nigeria Limited were arraigned by the EFCC on a 88-count charge bordering on alleged money laundering, misappropriation of funds, conspiracy and abuse of office.

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