June 21, 2024

Court adjourns Ex-Air Chief, Amosu, others’ alleged N21bn fraud trial till June 7


Glory Ebomah

Justice C.J. Aneke of the Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos, on Wednesday, March 8, 2023, adjourned till June 7, 2023 further hearing in the alleged N21bn fraud involving a former Chief of Air Staff, Adesola Amosu, and two others.The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Tuesday, November 13, 2018, re-arraigned Amosu alongside Air Vice Marshal Jacob Bola Adigun, a former Chief of Account and Budgeting, and Air Commodore Gbadebo Owodunni, a former Director of Finance and Budgeting on an amended 13-count charge bordering on money laundering to the tune of N21bn.The defendants are being prosecuted for alleged conspiracy and conversion of the funds belonging to the Nigerian Air Force, NAF, to the their personal use.One of the counts read: “That you, Air Marshal Adesola Amosun Nunayon (retd.), Air Vice Marshal Jacob Bola Adigun and Air Commodore Gbadebo Owodunni Olugbenga, on or about the 5th day of March, 2014 in Lagos, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, conspired amongst yourselves to convert the total sum of N21,467,634,707.43 (Twenty One Billion, Four Hundred and Sixty-seven Million, Six Hundred and Thirty Four Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seven Naira, Forty-three Kobo), property of the Nigerian Air Force, which sum you reasonably ought to have known forms part of proceeds of your unlawful activities to wit: criminal breach of trust, and hereby committed an offence contrary to section 18(a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended) and punishable under section 15(3) of the same Act.”At the resumed sitting today, the first prosecution witness, PW1, Okechukwu Akube, narrated how the sum of N2bn (Two Billion Naira) was transferred from the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, into the NAF Special Emergency Account on September 15, 2014 and 23rd September, 23 2014, respectively.When asked by the prosecution counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, SAN, to disclose his findings regarding where the funds deposited in the Exhibit A3, which is statement of account of NAF Special Emergency Account, ended up, the PW1, continuing his examination-in-Chief, stated that several transfers were made into Delfina Oil and Gas Limited, McAllan Oil And Gas Limited and Trapezites BDC.He added that other sums of money from these three companies were sent to Divention Construction Limited.Also, when asked what business his team had with the property on 40A, Bourdillon Street, Ikoyi, Lagos, as well as his findings during investigations, the witness explained that after the inflows from NIMASA were received , “Divention Construction Limited was one of the recipients of the funds.“Further investigations, according to him, revealed that the proceeds into exhibit A24 was used to procure a property , which was 40A, Bourdillon Street, Ikoyi, Lagos on behalf of the second defendant for personal use.The case was adjourned till June 7 and 8, 2023 for continuation of trial.

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