N16m Fraud: Court Remands Surety In Prison Custody

Olorunmonu Olorunfemi
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Thursday, October 26, 2017 arraigned one Olorunmonu Olorunfemi before Justice Hakeem Oshodi of the Lagos State High Court sitting in Ikeja on a 2-count charge bordering on conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and making false statement to a public officer. 

Olorunfemi had stood surety for one Nonso Anigbogu, who was to be arraigned for a criminal offense to the tune of N16m.
However, Anigbogu jumped the administrative bail granted him by the Commission, thereby leading to the arrest of Olorunfemi.
Count one reads: “That you, Olorunmonu Olorunfemi and one Wikky ( still at large) on or about the 11thday of November , 2015 in  Lagos, within the Ikeja judicial Division, conspired together to defeat the course of justice by frustrating the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, from securing the attendance of Nonso Anigbogu to appear in the office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission in furtherance of his investigation until the case is disposed of.”
Another count reads: “That you, Olorunmonu Olorunfemi , on or about the 11th day of November, 2015, within the Ikeja judicial Division, with the intention of causing Sidi Uwais , a public officer employed in the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission as an operative, to release one Nonso Anigbogu on bail to you, falsely informed the officer that you would produce the said Nonso Anigbogu whenever his presence is needed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, and thus caused the officer to release the said Nonso Anigbogu to you on bail, an action she would not have taken if she had not relied on your undertaking.”
The defendant pleaded not guilty to the charge preferred against him.
In view of his plea, counsel to the prosecution, Zainab Ettu, asked for a trial date and prayed the court to remand the defendant in prison custody.
However, counsel to the defendant, Yomi A., moved an oral application for his client to be admitted to bail on liberal terms. He informed the court that Anigbogu had passed on in Abuja.
He further stated that he had informed the prosecution of the passing of Anigbogu.
However, Ettu opposed the oral application for bail of the accused, adding that “My Lord, I am not aware of the passing of Anigbogu.
“My Lord, for the fact that he has mentioned it now, I would like us to deal with the matter formally.”
Justice Oshodi, after listening to both parties, asked for a copy of the death certificate on the deceased.
However, the defense counsel could only produce a scanned copy of the death certificate.
Consequently, Justice Oshodi ordered the defense counsel to produce the original copy of the death certificate.
The judge also directed the defense counsel to file an application for bail on behalf of his client, while assuring him that the application would be treated with urgency.
The defendant was ordered to be remanded in prison custody..

Consequently, Justice Oshodi adjourned to January 25, 2017 for the commencement of trial.
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