The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, today Thursday May 24, 2018 arraigned Pastor Osagie Ize -Iyamu, PDP governorship candidate in Edo State ; Lucky Imasuen, former Edo State deputy governor; Chief Dan Orbih, PDP chairman in Edo State; Tony Aziegbemi and Efe Erimuoghae before Justice P.I.Ajoku of the Federal High Court, Benin City, Edo State on an eight count charge bordering on money laundering.
The defendants were alleged to have sometime in March 2015 in Benin City directly recieved the sum of seven hundred million ( N700,000,000) , part of. The now infamous $115 Diezani Alison- Madueke bribe to influence the outcome of the 2015 general election.
The five defendants pleaded not guilty to all the counts when they were read to them.
In view of their plea, the prosecution counsel, Aso Larry Peters asked the court to fix a date for trial and to remand the defendants in prison custody .
However, counsel to the 1st defendant, Charles. U. Edosomwan (SAN) informed the court that the first defendant has filed a bail application before the court. He pleaded with the court to grant his client bail on self recognition, adding that his client submitted himself voluntary to the Commission when he heard they wanted to see him.
The same argument was canvassed by counsel to the second , third ,fourth and fifth defendants, O.G. Izevbuwa(Dr) , Kehinde Oguwunmiju (SAN) Ferdinard O.Orbih (SAN) and Jim Akhere, asking the court to grant their client bail. They all align their submission with that of counsel to the first defendant.
The prosecution counsel vehemently opposed the bail applications. He argued that though bail is at the discretion of the court, if the court must grant them bail, it should come with a stringent conditions, considering the amount involved and that they should have their data captured in the criminal record registry.
Justice P.I.Ajoko after listening to counsel, granted bail to the defendants in the sum of 10 million naira each with two sureties in like sum. The sureties must not be below grade level 16 and be resident in Edo State. The sureties must have landed property in Edo State and must deposit their passport with the court.
The case was adjourned to July 4, 2018 for trial.
One of the count reads: “that you Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, Lucky Imasuen, Tony Azigbemi, Chief Dan Orbih, Efe Erimuoghae Anthony and Chief Anthony Anenih (now at large) sometime in March 2015 in Benin within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did directly take possession and control of the sum of N700,000,000.00 (seven hundred million naira) only without any contract award which sum you reasonably ought to have known form part of proceeds of an unlawful act, to wit; fraud and corruption; and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 15(2)(d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act 2011 (as amended by the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Amendment Act 2012 and punishable under Section 15(3)of the same Act”.
Media and Publicity
24 May, 2018