EFCC Arraigns FirstNation Airways Boss Over N1.7bn Alleged Fraud
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arraigned the Managing Director of FirstNation Airways, Mr Kayode Odukoya.
The Lagos Zonal office of the anti-graft agency arraigned Mr Odukoya on Friday before Justice Mojisola Dada of the Special Offences Court sitting in Ikeja.
The defendant was charged with four counts bordering on forgery, use of false information, perjury and stealing to the tune of N1,741,994,962.04.
A statement by the EFCC spokesman, Mr Wilson Uwujaren, revealed the Odukoya allegedly forged the Memorandum of Loss of Lagos State Certificate of Occupancy in respect of a property located in Lagos.
One of the counts reads: “That you, Kayode Odukoya, on or about the 21st day of March, 2013 in Lagos within the Lagos Judicial Division knowingly forged the Memorandum of Loss of Lagos State Certificate of Occupancy Registered as No. 33 at page 33 in Volume 1011 at the Lagos State Registry, Alausa, Ikeja in respect of property being and situated at No. 29 Oduduwa Street, Ikeja GRA Lagos State, with intent that the document may in any way be used or acted on as genuine to the prejudice of another.”
Another charge read: “That you, Kayode Odukoya, FirstNation Airways Limited and Bellview Airlines Limited, on or about the 7th day of October, 2016 in Lagos within the Lagos Judicial Division dishonestly converted for your own use the sum of N1, 742, 994, 962.04 (One Billion, Seven Hundred and Forty-one Million, Nine Hundred and Ninety-four Thousand, Nine Hundred and Sixty-two Naira, Four Kobo), property of Skye Bank Plc.”
The defendant, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge when it was read to him.
In view of this, the prosecution counsel, Zainab Ettu, asked the court for a trial date and to remand the defendant in prison custody so as to compel his appearance in court.
According to her, “The defendant jumped the administrative bail given to him by the EFCC and refused to show up for his arraignment scheduled for March 9, 2018, before this court.”
“He was apprehended by the Operatives of the Commission to ensure his arraignment today,” Ettu added.
But counsel to the defendant urged the court to admit his client to bail, noting that was not a flight-risk and that “he is well known in the business sector in the country.”
After listening to both parties, Justice Dada adjourned the case till March 26 for hearing of the bail application and April 7, 8 and 9, 2018 for the commencement of trial.