Alleged $40m fraud: Witness’ absence stalls Jonathan’s cousin, wife’s trial

Alleged $40m fraud: Witness’ absence stalls Jonathan’s cousin, wife’s trial

The trial of former President Goodluck Jonathan’s cousin, Azibaola Roberts and his wife, Stella, accused of unlawfully receiving about $40 million from the former National Security Adviser (NSA), Sambo Dasuki, suffered set back due to witness absence in court, on Thursday. The matter was adjourned to Thursday for further continuation of cross examination of the prosecution witness.

However, at the resumed hearing of the matter, prosecution counsel, Sylvanus Tahir informed the court that the second prosecution witness, Mr. Olabode Familial who was bill to be cross examined has travelled out of the country.

He told the court that he called the witness three days ago to remind him of the date and the witness informed him that his wife took ill in the United Kingdom and the earliest he will be back in the country will be next week Monday. He prayed the court to allow them come back on the 19th and 20th of October, the dates he said are already subsisting dates fixed for the trial.

After listening to the submissions, the trial judge, Justice Nnamdi Dimgba said he will be travelling within that period to resume sitting on the 7th of November.

He further adjourned to 14 , 16 & 18 of November for continuation of trial. The anti-graft body had arraigned the duo on a seven-count charge bordering on money laundering, criminal breach of trust and corruption. Robert and wife are accused of diverting $40 million purportedly meant for the supply of tactical communication kits for Nigeria’s Special Forces.

The funds were alleged to have been transferred from the account of the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA), with the Central Bank of Nigeria to the domiciliary account of their company, One Plus Holdings. The offence, according to the EFCC, contravenes Section 8(a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 as amended in 2012 and punishable under Section 15 (3) of the same Act. The defendants pleaded not guilty to the charge when it was read to them by an official of the court.

Send your press release/articles to:

 info@dnlpartners.com ,Follow us on Twitter at @dnlpartners and Facebook at Facebook.com/Dnl-partners