Court further adjourns trial of Akinjide, others until Feb. 12

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A Federal High Court Lagos on Wednesday, further adjourned until Feb. 12, continuation of trial of a former Minister of the FCT Jumoke Akinjide and others facing charges of N650 million fraud.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had on Jan. 16, 2018, first arraigned Akinjide.

She was arraingned along with a former Sen. Ayo Adeseun, and a People’s Democratic Party’s (PDP) chieftain, Olarenwaju Otiti before Justice Muslim Hassan on a 24- count of alleged fraud.

Also named in the charge is a former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke, who is said to be “at large”.

The defendants had pleaded not guilty to the charges.

However, following an application filed by the defendants, the case was subsequently transferred to a new judge, Justice Chukwujekwu Aneke.

At the resumed hearing on Wednesday, the prosecutor, Mr Usman Buhari informed the court of some motions filed by defence counsel.

He further told the court that he had replied to the motions filed by first and second defendants but had yet to respond to that of the third defendant, and pleaded for an adjournment to enable him fittingly reply to the last motion.

The court accordingly granted his request and adjourned hearing until Feb. 12.

Reports said  that the defendants are alleged to have conspired among themselves to directly take possession of N650 million which they reasonably ought to have known formed part of proceeds of an unlawful act and without going through a financial institution.

They were alleged to have received the money from the former Petroleum Minister Alison-Madueke in the build-up to the 2015 general elections.

The sum was said to be part of a 115 million dollars allegedly disbursed by Alison- Madueke to influence the outcome of the 2015 presidential election.