Justice E. A. Adebayo of the Lagos High Court, Igbosere, today, June 18, 2012 ordered that a warrant of arrest be issued against Sunday Akinyemi and that once arrested, Akinyemi should be kept in prison custody until the next adjourned date.
The order was sequel to the prosecution counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo’s disclosure that the accused person was in Nigeria and that he was seen at a social function but failed to appear in court. Rotimi said Akinyemi who has been in and out of the country was reportedly sighted in church by a surveillance team from the Commission.
Justice Adebajo had sometimes in 2010 ordered that Sunday Akinyemi be remanded in prison custody until the charge preferred against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission is determined. Akinyemi was arraigned alongside Olu Osho on a 30 count charge of conspiracy to steal, stealing, forgery and uttering.
The accused persons were said to have conspired to steal about N90 million from Texas Connection Ferries Limited. Akinyemi’s application for bail was refused by Justice Adebajo on the grounds that with the avalanche of evidence brought against him by the EFCC including his jumping bail in America , he was not convinced that the accused person would not jump bail again.
However in September 2011, operatives of the Commission got intelligence report that Akinyemi was no longer at Ikoyi prisons where he was remanded by court. When operatives of the Commission stormed the prison, they were told by the Deputy Comptroller of Prison, Ikoyi that they acted on a court order issued by Justice Mohammed Idris of the Federal High Court Lagos, that Akinyemi should be released unconditionally and allowed to travel abroad for medical attention. Akinyemi had filed a similar application before Justice Adebajo but was refused.
Counsel to EFCC, Rotimi Oyedepo said the Commission subsequently applied to the Federal High Court for proceedings and discovered that Femi Falana filed a fundamental right application seeking Akinyemi’s unconditional release from prison. “On the receipt of the processes filed in Federal High Court, it was discovered that Falana neither put EFCC on notice nor the Attorney General of Lagos State at whose instance the Commission is prosecuting the defendant,” Rotimi said.
Akinyemi was first arraigned by the EFCC on the 16th of March 2010 before Justice Oke Lawal of the Lagos High Court but was refused bail on the 24th of March because of his alleged criminal record. He was subsequently re-arraigned before Justice E. A. Adebajo sequel to his petition dated April 16, 2010 which accused Justice Oke-Lawal of bias.
Hearing in the matter has been adjourned to June 28, 2012.
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