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Court Jails Former New Prudential Bank MD, Adetunji Abudu Two Years Over N195m Fraud

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A Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos, Thursday convicted former New Prudential Bank, Managing Director Adetunji Abudu and sentenced him to two years imprisonment over N195 million fraud.

Abudu’s conviction was at the instance of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.

EFCC spokesman, Tony Orilade said this in a statement in Abuja.

He added, “The convict was arraigned on Wednesday, February 17, 2016, on a four-count charge of acting in contravention of the Banks and Other Financial Institutions Act( BOFIA) 2004 to the tune of N195m( One Hundred and Ninety-five Million Naira).

“Abudu, while being the Managing Director of the bank, obtained a N35m loan and another N110m loan without authorization.

“The former New Prudent Bank boss also approved the setting off of a N50m loan granted to Total Access Concept Limited by Addoser Micro-finance Bank, which was also not authorized in accordance with the bank’s policy and in contravention of BOFIA 2004.

“In another count, the defendant failed to disclose his interest in Total Access and Integrated Concept Limited, an offense contrary to Section 18(8) and punishable under Section 18 (11) of the BOFIA LFN 2004.

“The defendant pleaded not guilty to the charges preferred against him by the prosecution, thereby leading to his full trial.

“In the course of the trial that began on April 12, 2016, the lead prosecution counsel, A.B.C. Oziokor, called seven prosecution witnesses and tendered several documents that were admitted in evidence by the court, while the defense presented five witnesses.

“Both parties consequently adopted their written addresses, after the closure of the case”.

In his ruling, Justice I.N. Buba found the defendant guilty on counts one, two, three and four as charged.

Further, the Judge said “The court has considered the fact that the convict is a first-time offender, a family man, and a breadwinner.

“The court will be lenient, given that the convict is a first offender. But this will also send the right signal that it is this type of attitude that has led our financial institutions into trouble.

“This is a matter the convict should not have allowed to go through the rigors of a criminal trial, having been given the opportunity to refund the money. But he still remained obstinate.”

Buba, therefore, sentenced the convict to two years on counts one, two, three and four, without an option of fine, with effect from the day of Judgment.

He also ordered that the sentences are to run concurrently.

But the convict was ordered to make restitution to the complainant, in accordance with Section 321(a) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, ACJA, “if the properties released cannot meet up the amount of exposure to the complainant.”

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BIG STORY

BREAKING: Buhari Fails To Renew Fowler’s Tenure, Names Muhammad Nami As New FIRS Boss

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President Muhammadu Buhari has appointed Muhammad Nami to replace Babatunde Fowler as chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).

Fowler’s tenure expired on Monday.

More to follow…

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Orji Kalu Will Receive Full Salaries, Allowances In Prison — Senate

Peter Okunoren

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The convicted Chief Whip of the Senate, Orji Kalu, will continue to receive his salaries and all other entitlements while in prison, the Senate has said.

This is despite that he will not be performing any legislative function from prison.

The spokesperson of the Senate, Godiya Akwashiki, disclosed this to PREMIUM TIMES on Sunday.

He said despite the conviction, Mr Kalu remains a sitting senator and will be paid all of his entitlements in full.

He said until the case gets to Supreme Court and a final judgement is given, Mr Kalu remains a serving lawmaker.

“He is still a senator. This is the first court. The matter is going to Supreme Court so, he still has the opportunity to appeal up to the Supreme Court level.

“Of course they will pay him. Because he is a sitting senator just like I said…if you file for an appeal, you are still serving and so they will pay you.

“All his entitlements will be paid. There is no cause for alarm. In fact, even if the Court of Appeal says they have upheld the judgement of the lower court, he still has the right to go to Supreme Court. So once the Supreme Court says, yes, the judgement is okay, then that’s the final,” he explained.

Earlier, Mr Akwashiki said Mr Kalu’s seat will not be declared vacant.

He explained that no provision in the constitution that says the seat of any senator facing prosecution or convicted at a lower court should be declared vacant.

Mr Kalu’s seat will not be declared vacant except he (Mr Kalu) has explored all the legal options available to him without success, he said.

“Even the tenure of a former governor Joshua Dariye, who has been in prison for some time now, ran its course until the end of the 8th National Assembly. Nobody declared his seat vacant.”

The Federal High Court in Lagos on Thursday sentenced Mr Kalu to 12 years in prison after convicting him of N7.65 billion fraud.

Mr Kalu, a former governor of Abia State, was pronounced guilty of the charge in a trial that lasted for 12 years.

The conviction comes 12 years after the ex-governor was first arrested by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in 2007 and was tried alongside his company, Slok Nigeria Limited, and Udeh Udeogu, who was Director of Finance and Accounts at the Abia State Government House during Mr Kalu’s tenure as governor.

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BREAKING: Assassins Attacks MD Of Maersk Line, Wife Forced To Drink Acid

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Palpable tension has enveloped Maersk, one of the biggest organizations in the Nigerian maritime industry.

According to reports, the Managing Director of Maersk Line, Gildas Tohouo Tohouo, and his family were said to have been attacked at their Lugard Road, Ikoyi home last night.

The attacked happened while he, his three children and his wife were at home.

While reports are saying that the man himself was severely stabbed and battling for his life, the wife is said to have given up the ghost as she was forced to drink acid by their assailants.

Several angles are being linked to the unfortunate incident. While some are saying the attack must have been as a result of a generator contract gone wrong between Maersk and some other unnamed companies, some are saying the attack was as a result of domestic electrician that was sacked.

Those in the know are claiming that Maersk as an organization is not new to attacks as such that results in the loss of lives. A source who craved anonymity claims that the company once sent two Dutch auditors to look into its books and both men were shot dead by assassins in a full office.

The attack on the managing director and his family is being suspected to be an insider job by some other people because the security around where he lives is premium and he lives close to former interim head of state, Chief Ernest Shonekan, whose place also enjoys excellent security because of his status as a former head of state.

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