The Economic and Financial Commission, EFCC, on Thursday, February 6, 2014 re-arraigned a former Minister of Aviation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode before Justice Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia of the Federal High Court, Lagos on a 40-count charge of money laundering.
Fani-Kayode’s re-arraignment followed the amendment of the previous 47 criminal counts charge of money laundering involving about N230 million.
In the amended charge before justice Ofili-Ajumogobia, Fani-Kayode is accused of accepting various sums of money totalling N100 million between July 7, 2006 and May 11, 2007 without passing through a financial institution.
One of the counts reads, “that you Chief Femi Fani-Kayode on or about the 22nd day of November 2006 whilst serving as Minister of Aviation of the Federal Republic of Nigeria did a transaction exceeding N 500,000.00 (five hundred thousand naira) which was not done through a financial institution by accepting cash payment of N10,000,000.00 (Ten Million Naira) which sum was further carried in cash to First Inland Bank Plc, Apapa Branch (now First City Monument Bank Plc) through one Mark Saviour Ndifreke (your close associate now at large) and put in an Investment Account in your favour for 90 days contrary to section 15(1) (d) and punishable under section 15(2) (b) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act 2004.
He pleaded not guilty to the charges.
After the re-arraignment, the court granted the plea by the accused person’s lawyer, Mr. Wale Akoni (SAN), to allow his client to continue in the bail conditions he was earlier granted.
Prosecution counsel, Festus Keyamo did not object to the prayers for bail but asked that trial date should be two or three consecutive days because “the matter started last year, we are ready to proceed and our witnesses are ready also”.
Justice -Ajumogobia granted the defendant’s request to be placed on a subsisting bail “for being a senior member of the bar and a chieftaincy title holder.”
She adjourned the matter till March 17, 18, and 19, 2014 for trial.
Media & Publicity (EFCC)