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Tompolo loses in court

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A Federal High Court in Lagos on Wednesday, dismissed the suit filed by Chief Government Ekpemupolo, alias Tomopolo, challenging a criminal charge preferred against him by the Federal Government.

Tompolo, through his lawyer, Mr Ebun Olu-Adegboruwa, had approached the court seeking nullification of section 221 and 306 of Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA) 2015, under which he was charged.

He argued that the two sections violated his constitutional right to fair hearing.

Joined as defendants in the suit are: the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Inspector-General of Police, the Chief of Army Staff, the Chief of Naval Staff and the Chief of Air Staff.

In the application, Tompolo also argued that both sections 221 and 306 of the ACJA are unconstitutional since they seek to prevent the court from exercising its jurisdiction to entertain any objection to a criminal charge.

Responding to Tompolo’s application, the Federal Government, through its lawyer, Mr Idris Mohammed, urged the court to dismiss the suit with a substantive cost, saying it is an abuse of court process.

Dismissing the suit, Justice Mojisola Olatoregun, held that the Supreme Court had affirmed that whether a charge is defective or not, an accused is bound to first take his plea.

He added that an interlocutory application could stop a criminal trial.

The judge, however, did not award any cost against the plaintiff.

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