Judge’s absence stalls trial of Fayose, firm over alleged N2.2bn fraud

The trial of a former governor of Ekiti State, Mr Ayodele Fayose, and a firm, Spotless Investment Limited, over alleged N2.2 billion fraud before the Federal High Court in Lagos, on Friday suffered a setback.

The trial judge, Justice Chukwujekwu Aneke, did not sit due to official engagement

Justice Aneke and other judges of the court were said to be away on a valedictory court session in honour of a retired judge, Justice Saliu Saidu.

The judge had at the last proceedings granted permission to Fayose to travel abroad for further medical treatment.

Fayose’s trial was consequently adjourned till April 26, 27, 28, 2021.

In the charges, the EFCC alleged, among other things, that Fayose, on June 17, 2014, “took possession of the sum of N1,219,000,000 to fund your 2014 gubernatorial campaign in Ekiti State, which you reasonably ought to have known formed part of the proceeds of an unlawful act, to wit: criminal breach of trust/stealing.”

The ex-governor was also alleged to have, on the same day, “received a cash payment of $5,000,000 allegedly from Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, the then Minister of State for Defence, which sum exceeded the amount authorised by law and you thereby committed an offence contrary to sections 1 and 16(d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended) and punishable under Section 16 (2)(b) of the same Act.”

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