Court adjourns trial of Jumoke Akinjide, others over alleged N650 million fraud

A lawyer walks through the compound at the Federal High Court in Ikoyi district in Lagos, Nigeria, May 8, 2018. REUTERS/Akintunde Akinleye

Justice Chukwujekwu Aneke of the Federal High Court, Ikoyi, Lagos has adjourned until January 17, 2020 for continuation of trial in the alleged N650million fraud case involving Jumoke Akinjide, a former Minister of State for the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), and two other chieftains of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), namely: Senator Ayo Adeseun and Olanrewaju Otiti.

The trio are standing trial on an amended 24-count charge, bordering on money laundering to the tune of N650million brought against them by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.

Akinjide and her co-defendants were arraigned on January 16, 2018 before Justice Muslim Hassan on a 24-count charge to which they pleaded not guilty.However, following an application filed by the defendants, the case was subsequently transferred to Justice Aneke’s court.

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At today’s sitting, the first prosecution witness (PW1), Kehinde Adeniyi, Head of Operations, Fidelity Bank, Bodija Branch, Ibadan, Oyo State told the court under cross-examination bycounsel to the first defendant, Bolaji Ayorinde, SAN, that she recollect the events of March 25, 2015 when the defendants allegedly cashed the said sum from the bank, as recorded in her written statement.

The defence counsel sought to impress it on the witness that the March 25, 2015 date did not tally with a date she gave in her testimony in court and moved to tender the written statement of the witness as exhibit, which the prosecution counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, countered for failing the test of Section 232 of the Evidence Act, which requires the defence counsel to have confronted the witness with the contradicting dates and ask for clarification before seeking to tender the documents.

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Consequently, Justice Aneke adjourned the matter until Friday, January 17, 2020 for ruling and continuation of trial.

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