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LAGOS, NIGERIA.     Saturday, May 31 2003














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Ibekwe, Ajudua, others in court over fraud
By Cornelius Onuoha

A re-elected member of the House of Representative, Mr. Maurice Ibekwe, Lagos businessman and lawyer, Chief Fred Ajidua and three others were yesterday arraigned at various courts in the Ikeja division of the High Court of Lagos for various economic and Financial crimes.

Ibekwe, representing Okigwe North Federal Constituency of Imo States, was arraigned before Justice Kudirat Kerere Ekun on a seven-count charge of obtaining $330,000 by false pretences.

Ajudua and Alumile Adedeji, (alias Dr. Ibrahim Ahmed or Ade Bendel were separely arranged with the offence of Advance fee fraud involving various sums of money.

Ibekwe, who was arrested by agents of the Economic and Financial Crimes commission on Wednesday was alleged to have committed the offence between October 1992 and June 1993 in Lagos.

According to the statement of offence, Ibekwe and Augunous Okoro, who is said to be on the run, fraudulently forged a number of documents implicating the Federal Task Force Office of the Central Bank of Nigeria the Corporate Affairs Commission and the Federal Ministry of Aviation.

The statement of offence which was signed by M.S Hassan, a principal Legal Adviser to the executive chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission Alhaji Nuhu Ribadu, said the offence was committed at the Ire-Akari Estate, Isolo, Lagos.

Ibekwe pleaded not guilty to the offence and the case was adjourned to June 10, 2003.

His counsel, Mr. George Omwubiya orally pleaded for bail for him but Kerere-Ekun would not take it but demanded that a formal application be brought and ordered that Ibekwe be remanded in prison custody.

Also arraigned before Kekere Ekun yesterday was Adedeji (alisa Ade bendels) on a two count charge under the Advance Fee fraud and other Related Offences Decree No 13 of 1995 as amended by Decree No 62 of 1999 involving $500,000.

They were said to have fraudulently obtained the money from General Ali Abdel-Azim Attia between May and December 2001 at Ikeja.

He was represented by Mr. Austin Ajoh and one other lawyer.

he was also refused bail and the case was adjourned to June 13, 2003.

On their part, Ajudua and one other person Charles Orie were charged before Justice Joseph Oyewole with a two court charge of felony and fraud under the Advance Fee Fraud and other related offences decree No 13 of 1995 as amended by decree No 62 of 1999 involving $1,698,338.

They were said to have committed the offence at Ikeja between July 30, 1999 and February 9, 2000.

According to the statement 1 offence, the two obtained the sum from one Remmy Hendrick Luigi Gima of Germany by false pretences.

They pleased not guilty and they were ordered to be remanded at the Special Fraud unit of the Nigerian Police at Milverton road, Ikoyi, while the case was adjourned to June 17, 2003.

Their lawyers led by Mr. Wale Adesokan applied for bail for the accused persons but the application was refused on the ground that it was made orally.


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