Alleged N6.9bn fraud: Court adjourns Fayose’s money laundering trial till Feb 21

The money laundering trial of a former governor of Ekiti State, Ayodele Fayose, could not proceed on Friday before the Federal High Court in Lagos as the court did not sit.

The judge, Justice Chukwujekwu Aneke, is said to be away on official assignment.

At the last adjourned date, the matter was slated for Jan. 26, Feb. 21, and Feb. 22 for trial.

Fayose is being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for alleged N6.9 billion fraud and money laundering.

He was first arraigned on October 22, 2018, before Justice Mojisola Olatotegun, alongside his company, Spotless Investment Ltd., on 11 counts bordering on fraud and money laundering.

He, however, pleaded not guilty to the charges and was granted bail on October 24, 2018, in the sum of N50 million with sureties in like sum.

The defendant was, however, re-arraigned before Justice Chukwujekwu Aneke on July 2, 2019, after the case was withdrawn from Olatoregun following a petition by the EFCC.

Fayose equally pleaded not guilty before Aneke, who allowed him to continue on the bail granted him by Olatoregun.

The EFCC has since opened its case before Aneke and is a leading witness in evidence.

According to the commission, on June 17, 2014, Fayose and one Abiodun Agbele took possession of N1.2 billion to fund his gubernatorial election campaign in Ekiti.

The commission alleged that the sum formed part of the crime proceeds.

Fayose was also alleged to have received a cash payment of five million dollars from the then Minister of State for Defence, Sen. Musiliu Obanikoro, without going through any financial institution.

The EFCC also alleged that the former governor retained N300 million in his bank account and took control of the aggregate sums of about N622 million, which formed part of the crime proceeds.

It added that Fayose procured De Privateer Ltd. and Still Earth Ltd. to retain aggregate sums of N851 million, which formed part of crime proceeds.

The commission also accused Fayose of using about N1.6 billion in crime proceeds to acquire property in Lagos and Abuja.

The former governor also allegedly used N200 million in crime proceeds to acquire a property in Abuja in the name of his elder sister, Moji Oladeji.

The alleged offences contravene Sections 15(1), 15(2), 15(3), 16(2)(b), 16(d), and 18(c) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act, 2011.

– (NAN)

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