The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), on Wednesday arraigned four persons before a Federal High Court in Abuja Abuja on a 9-count charge bordering on conspiracy, forgery and obtaining by false pretense to the tune of $1million.
The quartet of Umar Audu Bida, Truth Igogori, Ifenyinwa Nwankwesiri and Ogechukwu Obaji before Justice Binta Nyako of the Federal High Court sitting in Maitama, were arraigned alongside four companies, Universal Contractors, Lambda Energy Services Limited, Double Wonder Concept Limited, and ICS Energy Services Limited.
The anti-graft agency said the defendants, sometime in 2014 allegedly conspired to defraud one Donald Latella of North Park Plc of $1million under the pretext of supplying about two million barrels of Bonny Light Crude Oil.
The offence, the anti-graft agency said contravenes Section 8 (b) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1 (3) of the same Act.
Count two of the charge reads: “That you, Umaru Audu Bida, Truth Igogori, Ifenyinwa Nwankwesiri, Ogechukwu Obaji, Universal Contractors, Lambda Energy Services LTD, Double Wonder Concept Limited, and ICS Energy Services Limited and others now at large, sometime in 2014, within the Judicial Division of the Federal High Court of Nigeria attempted to obtain the sum of $1,000,000.00 (One million United States Dollars) from Donald Latella of North Park LLC under the false pretence of supplying about 2 million Barrels of Bonny Light Crude Oil which you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 8 (b) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1 (3) of the same Act”.
The accused persons pleaded not guilty to the charge and the prosecution counsel, Onjefu Obe, asked the court for a date to call witnesses and for the defendants to be remanded in prison custody pending trial.
However, Ammeh O. Ammeh representing 1st and 5th defendants and R. O. Attabo standing for 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 6th, 7th and 8th defendants, through oral applications prayed the court to admit their clients to bail.The trial Judge, Justice Binta Nyako held that the court was a court of record and asked the defence to make their applications formal and adjourned till Thursday, February 16, 2017, for hearing of the bail applications and ordered that the accused persons to be remanded in prison custody.