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EFCC Arraigns Businesswoman, Company For Alleged N140bn Fraud In Lagos

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EFCC

Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Monday arraigned Saadatu Ramalan-Yaro, a businesswoman, for the second time in Lagos State, two weeks after her first arraignment.

The businesswoman was brought before Justice Obiora Egwuatu of the Federal High Court in Abuja on charges of money laundering amounting to over N140 billion. She is accused of not fulfilling her responsibilities as the director of Tsami Babi Resources Limited, a designated non-financial business, by not submitting the company’s activities.

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The EFCC stated that Ramalan-Yaro deposited N100 billion into the company’s account with Zenith Bank without informing the Ministry of Commerce.

The act committed by the accused contravenes Sections 5(1) (a) and 16(1) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act of 2011 (as amended), and is punishable under Section 16(2)(b) of the same Act.

In the second charge, Ramallan-Yaro and M.A.Y. Fine Fragrance Limited, a designated non-financial institution, were accused of money laundering amounting to N40 billion. The accused pleaded not guilty, and the prosecution counsel requested a date for the commencement of the case.

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The defense counsel, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), requested bail for the defendant, which was granted by Justice Egwuatu. The trial was adjourned until July 12 and 13, 2023.

The bail conditions required the defendant to deposit her international passport with the court and provide two sureties, one of whom must be a public servant and the other a relative, with a total bail amount of N100 million.

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Again, court rejects Abba Kyari’s fresh bail request

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Again, court rejects Abba Kyari’s fresh bail request

Justice Emeka Nwite of the Federal High Court in Abuja, on Wednesday, dismissed a fresh bail application the detained Deputy Commissioner of Police, Abba Kyari, filed to be released on bail, pending the conclusion of his trial.

Kyari is facing an eight-count charge bordering on drug trafficking brought against him by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency.

Also read: Appeal Court dismisses suspended DCP Abba Kyari’s bail application

The NDLEA alleged that Kyari and his men, sometime between January 19 and 25, 2022, at the office of Inspector-General of Police, IRT, Abuja, in connivance with one ASP John Umoru (now at large), ACP Sunday J. Ubia, ASP Bawa James, Insp. Simon Agirigba and Insp. John Nuhu, unlawfully tampered with 21.25kilograms worth of cocaine that they seized from the two convicted drug traffickers- Chibunna Patrick Umeibe and Emeka Alphonsus Ezenwane- even as it also accused them of dealing in cocaine worth 17.55kg.

The charge stated that this is contrary to section 14(b) of the NDLEA Act, CAP N30 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004, the defendants

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The court had, in two previous rulings, denied the defendant’s bail and ordered their remand at Kuje prison.

The Court of Appeal in Abuja also refused Kyari’s request for bail.

At today’s sitting, Justice Nwite, in a ruling, held that Kyari’s application lacked merit.

He stated that Kyari failed to establish any exceptional circumstance that would warrant the exercise of judicial discretion in his favour.

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The trial judge said that the court had earlier dismissed a similar bail application that was brought before it and ordered an accelerated hearing of the case.

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He said no evidence was shown to convince the court why it should depart from its earlier ruling.

Justice Nwite rejected Kyari’s application and approved that the NLDEA, proceed with the prosecution of both Kyari and his co-defendants in the matter.

Recall that the court last month granted Kyari temporary bail from prison custody to enable him to participate in his mother’s final burial rites.

The court granted him N50m bail for two weeks and two sureties in like sum.

Previously, Kyari had filed an application to challenge the charge brought against him which the court on March 22, 2023, dismissed.

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Kyari, through his team of lawyers led by Mr Nureni Jimoh (SAN), argued that the charge was legally defective and premature.

He added that the NDLEA ought to have allowed police to exhaust its internal machinery before filing the applications in court.

He claimed that the Police had already commenced an investigation into allegations against him and issued an interim report.

The defendant argued that he could only be charged to court upon the conclusion of the internal investigation by the police.

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Couple, accomplice arrested for alleged human trafficking in Anambra

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Couple, accomplice arrested for alleged human trafficking in Anambra

Anambra State Government through the Ministry of Women and Social Welfare has handed a couple and an accomplice to the police over alleged human trafficking in Ifitedunu, Dunukofia Local Government Area of the state.

This was made known in a statement by the media aide to the Women Affairs Commissioner, Chidinma Ikeanyionwu, on Facebook on Tuesday.

 

Also read: NURTW member, two others jailed for drug trafficking

 

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According to the statement, the arrest was made possible after the community chairman, Mr Arinzechukwu Azodo, notified the Women Affairs Commissioner, Ify Obinabo, about a suspected trafficking incident in the community.

According to Mr Azodo, he was alerted by his team commander over a report of suspected trafficking taking place in the community and quickly informed the commissioner, who instructed him to arrest the suspects.

Upon arrest, it was discovered that the suspects were about to seal a deal worth one million naira.

One of the suspects, Ebere, confessed that she was approached by another suspect, Temple Nwankwo, who offered to sell her twin baby.

Ebere claimed she agreed to partner with Temple and link her up with a prospective buyer. However, Temple denied any involvement in the alleged transaction.

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The statement said, “Ebere said she accepted to partner with her and went further to link her up to a prospective buyer who needed a male child urgently. Ebere in her confession said that after their negotiation, they agreed to meet at Oye Agu to further seal the transaction but instead, Temple requested an instant payment of one million naira in her account which the buyer objected to because he hadn’t seen the baby in question which brought disagreement among them before Temple changed her mind and left them.

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“On the alleged seller’s part, Temple Nwankwo from Enugu State but resident at Ifitedunu, she denied ever having to be in any type of business with Ebere but explained that she only reconnected with her when she was four months pregnant. Temple in her defence said it was Ebere who actually asked for her help in getting a male child because she’s not been able to have a child of her own.

“Temple in her confession said, after Ebere made the request, she warned her to never involve her in such and that since that day, Ebere has been coming to her house in her absence meeting her daughter even after her several warnings to her.

The investigation revealed that Temple had been accused of human trafficking by some community members, who claimed that she and her husband, Ndubuisi Nwankwo, were involved in the business. When questioned about the whereabouts of her two children, Temple claimed they were dead, but her story raised suspicions.

The statement added, “It will interest you to know that, some members of the community alleged that Temple is into the trafficking business with her husband Ndubuisi Nwankwo as an accomplice because they have not seen some of her children for a very long time.

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“When the couple were asked the whereabouts of the two kids, they claimed that they were dead but when asked about the people present when they were buried, they stated no one has ever been around to witness the burial of the two children.

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“It was at this point that the Honourable Commissioner for Women and Social Welfare Anambra, Obinabo, who was visibly sad over the incident, handed them over to the police for investigation and prosecution.”

The Commissioner for Women and Social Welfare, Obinabo, handed the suspects over to the police for investigation and prosecution, reiterating the state government’s commitment to ending human trafficking.

She urged the public to be vigilant and report any suspicious activities to the ministry.

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Police vow justice, hunt masterminds of Anambra attack

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Police vow justice, hunt masterminds of Anambra attack

The Anambra State Commissioner of Police, CP Nnaghe Obono Itam has condemned the recent violent incident in the Nnobi and Nnewi communities vowing to bring the perpetrators to justice.

This follows the abduction and subsequent gun battle that resulted in the deaths of three individuals, including a vigilante operative, and left two others injured.

Also read: Terrorists attack Yobe military base, kill soldier

In a statement issued on Tuesday by the state Police Public Relations Officer, SP Tochukwu Ikenga, Itam expressed outrage over the incident, describing the assailants as cowards and pledging a relentless manhunt to apprehend them.

The statement read, “The Commissioner of Police, CP Nnaghe Obono Itam has ordered a manhunt operation on the assailants and vows to get justice for the heroic act of the murdered vigilante operative and others. The Commissioner condemned the killings in the strongest possible terms, describing the killers as cowards who have ‘murdered sleep.’ He consoles the families of the deceased and vows to get justice for the victims.”

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“The tragic events unfolded on Monday when security operatives were tracking suspected kidnappers who attacked a burial ceremony and abducted a citizen using a red Highlander at about 1:30 p.m. in the Nnewi area. The suspects were followed to Nnobi, where they engaged in a gun battle with the police. During the exchange, a vigilante operative was fatally shot, and stray bullets struck two innocent bystanders.

“The armed men, operating in a red Highlander jeep, abducted a citizen in Nnewi at about 1:30 p.m. on June 17, 2024, and were trailed to Nnobi, where they engaged security operatives in a gun battle. During the gun duel, one of the security operatives was fatally hit by a bullet, and due to the indiscriminate shootings by the hoodlums in an attempt to escape, two innocent passersby were also fatally struck.”

It added that on arrival at the scene of the incident, five injured individuals were promptly rushed to the hospital for urgent medical attention.

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“When the police responding team arrived at the scene and found five individuals severely injured during the attack. They were promptly rushed to the hospital. Unfortunately, three of the victims, including a 22-year-old woman, were confirmed dead by the doctors on duty, while two others are currently receiving treatment.

“The Police Responding Team at the scene recovered the bodies of the victims and took them to the hospital, but regrettably, three of the victims, including a 22-year-old lady, were confirmed dead by the doctors on duty, while two others are currently receiving treatment,” Ikenga said.

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Theheute earlier reported that some gunmen invaded the Nnewi community in Nnewi North Local Government Area as well as the Nnobi community in Idemili South LGA of Anambra State on Monday.

Sources in the areas who spoke to our correspondent on the condition of anonymity, said several persons sustained varying degrees of injuries as the assailants suspected to be enforcing the Monday sit-at-home exercise shot indiscriminately into the air when they arrived.

The sources said, “The gunmen arrived in three vehicles and went straight to a popular hotel at Nnewichi (name withheld). One of the persons in the hotel at the time they attacked was abducted by the gunmen.

“The gunmen shot sporadically into the ground while the bullets were flying all around the hotel’s premises. Mobile phones and other valuables were collected from the victims the gunmen met in the hotel.

CP Itam has called on the public, especially eyewitnesses, to provide any information that could assist in the ongoing manhunt operation.

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