$8.4m Fraud Charge: Ajudua’s Co-accused Gets Separate Trial
The Lagos High Court sitting in Ikeja has granted a request for a separate trial made by a High Court registrar, Mrs Oluronke Idowu Rosulu, who is accused of aiding Mr. Fred Ajudua to scam a former Army General, Ishaya Bamaiyi, of $8.4 million.
Justice Oluwatoyin Ipaye granted Rosulu’s application on the ground that she has a right to a separate hearing.
Mrs Rosulu, through her counsel, had filed an application seeking to separate the charges against her from those of Mr Ajudua.
The registrar who has since been suspended by the Lagos State Judicial Service Commission hinged the application on three grounds bordering on speedy trial. She wants the matter dispensed before her retirement next year.
Ruling on the application which was vehemently opposed by the prosecution counsel, Mr Saidu Atteh and Ajudua’s counsel, Mr Olalekan Ojo, the trial judge said considering the time taken for the eventual arraignment of the 1st defendant (Ajudua) and his various pending applications before the court and Lagos Court of Appeal, it would amount to injustice not to grant the 2nd defendant (Rosulu) a separate trial.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had charged Ajudua to court for allegedly defrauding Bamaiyi of about $8.4million.
The EFCC alleged that Ajudua conspired with others (now at large) to perpetrate the fraud between November 2004 and June 2005.
In the amended charges, Rosulu, a court registrar with Justice Olubunmi Oyewole (now of the Appeal Court) is accused of aiding Mr Ajudua to scam the former military officer.
According to the EFCC, Ajudua funneled the sum of $330,000 through Mrs Rosulu and others to defraud Bamaiyi while they were both on remand at Kirikiri prison in Lagos for separate alleged crimes.
The commission said Ajudua obtained the money from Bamaiyi by claiming that it represented the professional fees charged by Chief Afe Babalola (SAN) to handle his case and also as funds to bribe the judge hearing his case.
Others listed in the scheme include Ademilue Adedeji (aka Ade Bendel), one Mr Jonathan, one Mr Kenneth, and Princess Hamabon William. The other accused suspects are currently fugitives.
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