Metro

Canada-based Nigerian national arraigned for ‘N84 million fraud’

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), on Wednesday, told a Federal High Court, Abuja, that the action of the former Senate President, Bukoka Saraki, has been hindering the agency from probing him.

The Lagos Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Wednesday arraigned Edrian Osagie Ididia before Justice S.O. Solebo of the Special Offences Court sitting in Ikeja, Lagos.

Ididia is facing a two-count charge bordering on stealing and obtaining money by false pretence to the tune of N84 million.

One of the counts reads: “Edrian Osagie Ididia, between the 13th day of September 2019 and the 29th day of October 2019 at Lagos, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, with intent to defraud, fraudulently obtained the sum of N84, 000,000 (Eighty-four Million Naira) from Mr. Mark David Umeh on the false representation that you had three Sports Utility Vehicles for sale to Mr. Mark David Umeh, which representation you knew was false.”

Another count reads: “Edrian Osagie Ididia, between the 13th day of September 2019 and the 29th day of October 2019 at Lagos , within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, dishonestly stole and converted to your own use the sum of N84,000,000 (Eighty-four Million Naira), property of Mr. Mark David Umeh.”

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He pleaded “not guilty” when the charges were read to him in Court.

In view of his plea, the prosecuting counsel, M.K. Hussain, prayed the Court for a trial date and for the remand of the defendant.

Defence counsel, Victor Chinedu, however, informed the Court of the bail application of the defendant, which he said had also been served on the prosecution.

“The defendant had earlier been granted bail by the Federal High Court, and he has fulfilled the conditions,” he said, adding that Ididia was again arrested by operatives of the EFCC upon his release.

In opposing the bail application, Hussain told the Court that the prosecution had filed a nine-paragraph counter-affidavit, and further argued that the defendant constituted a flight-risk.

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He said: “ Indeed, the defendant was granted bail before the Federal High Court.

“However, the defendant is resident in Canada and does not have any known address in Nigeria.

“Even though the defendant spent the whole of last year in Nigeria, there is no residential address, which the defendant can be traced to.

“He is living from one hotel to the other.”

Thereafter, Justice Solebo adjourned till February 11, 2022 for ruling on the application and ordered the remand of the defendant at the Correctional Centre pending the ruling.

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