Court Orders Permanent Forfeiture Of $8.4m, N9.2bn Linked To Patience Jonathan
A Federal High Court Sitting in Lagos has ordered the permanent forfeiture to the Federal Government, the sum of $8.4million and another N9.2billion linked to the wife of the former President, Dame Patience Jonathan.
Justice Mojisola Olaterogun held that she failed to show reasonable cause why the funds should not be permanently forfeited.
The court found that the funds as claimed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) was reasonably suspected to be proceeds of crime pursuant to Section 17 of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, 2006.
On April 20, 2018, the EFCC had secured an interim order for forfeiture of the sums following a motion exparte it filed before the court.
It joined as respondents: Patience Jonathan, Globus Integrated Services Ltd, Finchley Top Homes Limited, Am-Pm Global Network Limited, Pagmat Oil and Gas Limited and Magel Resort Limited and Esther Oba.
On October 29, 2018, the EFCC counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, moved his motion for final forfeiture of the sums, urging that same be finally forfeited to the Federal Government.
Meanwhile, defence counsel, Ifedayo Adedipe (SAN), Mike Ozekhome (SAN), and Ige Asemudara, had respectively moved their processes in opposition to the motion for final forfeiture.
On January 15, 2019, the court admitted electronic evidence presented by the defence team which depicted video exhibits showing various business outfits of Finchley Top Homes Ltd. and Magel Resort Limited.
The court had then adjourned for judgment.
In a judgment delivered on February 28, the court held that it found the affidavit evidence conflicting, and same could only be resolved by oral evidence of parties.
The court had then ordered parties to call their witnesses.
At the last adjourned date, an EFCC witness, Orji Chukwuma, had concluded evidence before the court, while the court had adjourned till today for continuation of evidence.
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