The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), today, arraigned three officials of Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), of Osun State office, before a Federal High Court, Lagos, on alleged fraud of N177.3 million.
The three INEC officials arraigned before Justice (Professor) Chuka Obiozor are :Gbadegun Isaiah Abiodun, Oladipo Oladapo and Afolabi Peter Albert.
They were arraigned on five count charge bordering on conspiracy, money laundering, bribery and receiving sum of N177.3 million money without going through financial institutions.
The accused persons and others now at large, according to the EFCC, committed the offence between March and April, 2015.
The EFCC in a charge marked FHC/L/261c/18, alleged that the accused persons were alleged to have on or before March 30, 2015, conspired amongst themselves to accept cash payment of the sum of N177, 300 million, which exceed N5,000,000.00 (Five Million Naira) without going through financial institution.
Both Abiodun and Oladapo were also alleged to have received the sum of N22 million from the said N177.3 million, to commit forgery.
Oladapo was also alleged to have received the sum of N3 million, from Abiodun, which he used as bribery. He was also alleged to have used a company named Bacole Multiconcerns Universal Limited, which he used in receiving the sum of N10 million through his account number 1015584974 domiciled at United Bank for Africa (UBA), from the first accused, Abiodun, which he also used to bribe.
The offences according to the prosecution team led by Ekene Ihenacho and George Yakua, contravened sections 18, 1, 15(2), 18(c) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 201 1 (as amended by the Act No.1 2012, and punishable under sections 16(2) and 15(3) of the same act.
The accused persons pleaded not guilty to the offences.
Following their plea, EFCC lawyer, Ihenacho, urged the court to remand them in prison custody pending trial.
But their lawyer, Dapo Esan, while not opposing the trial date as requested by the prosecutor, urged the court to remand his clients in the custody of the EFCC.
Esan told the court that his clients are diabetes patients, and that the prison service may not have the facility to take of their health challenge. Adding that they have been earlier granted administrative bail by the EFCC and they have strictly complied with the bail terms.
Esan therefore begged the court to allow his clients to be remanded at the custody of the EFCC.
The EFCC lawyer, however urged the court to refuse granting the application that the accused be remanded at EFCC custody, saying that the facility is only meant for those under investigation and that it has been overstretched.
He therefore urged the court to remand them in prison custody.
Justice (Professor) Obiozor, in his ruling ordered that the accused be remanded at Ikoyi Prisons pending the hearing and determination of their bail applications
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