Defendants in N400m fraud trial on the run, Court told

Defendants in N400m fraud trial on the run, Court told

Wednesday, June 7, 2017 7:33 am

Mr Tochukwu Nwazota, Counsel to  Chief  Ben Orajiaku on Tuesday told an FCT High Court in Jabi, Abuja that all four defendants standing trial for misappropriating N400million had fled the country.

The defendants are Ifeanyi Biaduo, Obinna Kanu, Anthony Odo, Kehinde Bello and K and B Atlantics, a company were sued before the Court for alleged misappropriation of the money.

The plaintiffs are Orajiaku, Chief Ernest Ilochukwu and Nestello Group of Company Nigeria Ltd.

The defendants were sued for misappropriating over N410 million between 2010 and 2012 belonging to Orajiaku,  Ilochukwu and the company.

The misappropriation was said to have been perpetrated by the defendants in Abuja within those two years.

The defendants are now at large.

The plaintiff counsel Nwazota, informed the court that Biaduo collected from Orajiaku N110 million under the pretext of doing business with him.

He said that Kanu, a former estate manager to Ilochukwu also collected more than N300 million from the chief.

The counsel said that all the monies were collected from the plaintiffs under the pretence of doing business with them.

According to Nwazota, all efforts by the plaintiffs to recover their money proved abortive, a situation which led to reporting the matter to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Nwazota said that the defendants were arrested by the EFCC and were later granted administrative bail and that after the bail, they absconded to unknown destination.

According to the plaintiff counsel, investigation has it that the major culprits in the matter, Biaduo and Kanu absconded to the U.S.

He said that the plaintiffs were in the court to help in recovering the money from the defendants.

At the resumed hearing of the matter on Tuesday, a supean  witness, Mr Ayodeji Olorundare, a police sergeant attached to the EFCC told the court that he was the person who investigated the matter.

“I was still at the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) Area 10, when the matter happened,’’ he said.

Olorundare said that his investigation revealed that the 2nd defendant, Kanu was held at the custody of the EFCC and was later released on bail.

“In the course of searching for him after his bail, I discovered he has left the country.

“While conducting my investigation, the statement of account collected from the bank shows that there are money going out of his account.

“I also discovered during my investigation that Kanu has different property in Abuja in Jabi, Asokoro, Lugbe and Maitama,’’ he said.

Olorundare also said that Kanu also sold some property belonging to Ilochukwu without his proper consent and he failed to remit the money to him.

He said that when Kanu was contacted on phone, he promised to come and since then he had refused to keep his promise.

According to Olorundare, the refusal of Kanu to show his face made the Nigeria police to declare him wanted and placed public notice on him.

The Judge, Justice Yusuf Halilu therefore adjourned further hearing in the case till June 22.

The judge also ordered that the defendants be put on notice before the next adjourned date.  (NAN)



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