Alleged $1,2m Fraud: Court Remands Defendant in Prison

Justice .S. Ogunsanya of the State High Court sitting in Ikeja, Lagos, on Tuesday, September 21, 2021, remanded one Madu Ozoemena, who is prosecuted for an alleged $1,201,174 fraud, in prison.

Ozoemena is prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on a two-count amended charge bordering on obtaining property by pretence contrary to Section 1 (1) (a) and (3) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Offences Act 2006.

One of the counts reads: “Madu Anthony Ozoemena, between 2010 and 2011, at Lagos within the Ikeja Judicial Division, with intent to defraud, obtained 39,366 Chinese mobile phones worth $1,201,174 from System Telecom, a company based in Hong Kong by falsely representing to Lien Laibon, the owner of the said System Telecom that you had a loan for the sum of $200,000 from Bank Manager, using landed property as the collateral for the loan, which representation you knew to be false.”

Ozoemena pleaded “not guilty” to the amended charges when he was re-arraigned in 2017.

At the resumed sitting today, the prosecuting counsel, Oluwakemi Makinde, noted that the case had suffered several adjournments due to either the absence of the defendant or his counsel.

The defence counsel was absent in court today and the defendant could not provide any concrete information about his whereabouts.

The trial judge also observed that previous sittings could not hold due to either the absence of the defendant or his lawyer.

Justice Ogunsanya further noted that it had been one excuse or the other since the defendant changed his lawyers.

Irked by the development which has slowed down the trial since 2014 when he was first arraigned, the trial judge remanded the defendant in prison till the next adjourned date on November 17, 2021.

The Judge also warned the defendant that his bail would finally be revoked if his lawyer is not present in court at the next sitting.