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Former accountant general and co-defendant ask for more time to repay stolen funds

A former Performing Accountant Basic of the Federation, Anamekwe Nwabuoku, on Wednesday pleaded with Justice James Omotoso of a Federal Excessive Courtroom in Abuja to grant him extra time to finalise the compensation of public funds allegedly looted by him and the co-accused within the go well with.

Nwabuoku and his co-defendant, Felix Nweke, are going through 11 counts of cash laundering introduced by the Financial and Monetary Crimes Fee.

Nwabuoku and Nweke, a former deputy director of the Ministry of Defence, are being prosecuted for laundering cash value N1.6 billion.

The suspects had been accused of committing the act whereas Nwabuoku was serving as Director of Finance and Accounts on the Ministry of Defence between 2019 and 2021.

Whereas Nwabuoku is the primary suspect, Nweke is the second suspect within the cost sheet titled: FHC/ABJ/CR/240/24, dated Might 20 and filed on Might 27 by EFCC lawyer Ekele Iheanacho.

Nwabuoku was appointed appearing AGoF on Might 20, 2022, beneath former President Muhammadu Buhari, after Ahmed Idris was suspended as AGF over alleged N80 billion fraud.

Nevertheless, he was impeached in July 2022, simply weeks after taking workplace.

When the case was heard on Wednesday, the suspects requested the courtroom to postpone their arraignment to a different date to finish the compensation.

The suspects got the chance to make their plea.

Nweke’s lawyer, Emeka Onyeaka, knowledgeable the courtroom that there was a brand new growth within the case.

He advised the courtroom that his consumer had taken steps to settle the case.

The lawyer stated Nweke had repaid important quantities of the cash traced to him by the anti-corruption company.

“The second suspect has taken steps as there’s a communication with the fee via-a-vs concerning the alleged violations in making a refund.

“The fee has obtained the cash and has promised to tell us about it,” he stated.

Onyeaka stated: “After we obtained the grievance on Monday, we contacted the fee and had been requested to attend till the executive course of started.”

He stated that since a big sum of money had been repaid if his consumer had been to seem in courtroom, such an motion would have implications for the trial.

He subsequently requested the courtroom for an adjournment in order that they might take additional steps within the administrative process.

Maduakolam Igwe, who performed for Nwabuoku, supported Onyeaka’s proposal.

Igwe stated his consumer had taken the identical steps and a big quantity had been repaid.

“We’ve got written to the fee about this. The primary defendant has additionally made some repayments.

“I’m allowed to take over the submission of my pupil pal to type out the executive process,” he confirmed.

The lawyer showing on behalf of the EFCC, Ogechi Ujam, acknowledged that though the fee had obtained a proposal letter, she stated: “Nevertheless, there was no negotiation, no settlement and no settlement reached by the events.”

Based on her, we request the honorable courtroom to permit us, in view of the circumstances, to summon the suspects.

“Set a date for the summons,” Justice Omotosho replied.

After the lawyer agreed, the case was adjourned till October 14 for the summons.

The EFCC alleged that Nwabuoku, Nweke, Temeeo Synergy Idea Restricted (previously recognized), Turge International Funding Restricted (previously recognized), Laptev Bridge Restricted (previously recognized), Arafura Transnational Afro Restricted (previously recognized) and different individuals (previously recognized) transformed funds derived from unlawful actions for private use.

The offence is opposite to Part 18 of the Prevention of Cash Laundering Act, 2011 (as amended by Act No. 1 of 2012) and punishable beneath Part 15(2)(b) and (3) of the identical Act.

In depend two, Nwabuoku, Felix and Temeeo Synergy Idea Restricted (on a big scale) not directly transformed the sum of N262,602,897.27 (200 and sixty-two million, 600 and two thousand, eight hundred and ninety-seven naira twenty-seven kobo) between September 2019 and October 2020 in Abuja.

The cash was allegedly deposited into the Zenith Checking account of Temeeo Synergy Idea Restricted (at giant), account quantity: 1016901286, figuring out that the funds had been derived from unlawful actions.

The offence, the EFCC stated, is opposite to Part 15(2)(b) and punishable beneath Part 15(3) of the Cash Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended by Act No. 1 of 2012), amongst different prices.

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