EFCC Arrests Innoson Motors Boss, Innocent Chukwuma

Operatives of Nigeria’s anti-graft agency, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Tuesday, December 19, arrested the founder and chairman of Nigeria’s automobile company, Innoson Motors, Innocent Chukwuma.

The Innoson Motors boss was arrested in his residence in Enugu, southeastern Nigeria.

Chukwuma’s arrest may not be unconnected with the lingering law case between the automobile company and Nigeria’s new generation bank, Guaranty Trust Bank.

In July, Chukwuma, and Innoson Nig Ltd. filed a fresh lawsuit against Guaranty Trust Bank PLC in an Abuja Division of the Federal High, claiming a total sum of N400 billion damages for “injury to their reputation, moral character, credibility, office, vocation and trade”.

The automobile company also sought for an order of perpetual injunction restraining GT Bank from further defaming them.

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Last month, Innoson Group denied media reports that the Nigeria Police Force, (NPF), applied for a bench warrant to arrest its chairman, Chukwuma.

Some media outlets had reported that Nigeria’s Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris applied for a warrant to arrest Mr. Chukwuma and four others for their refusal to appear before the court over allegations of forgery.

Quashing the report in a statement signed by the company’s head of corporate communications, Cornel Osigwe, the indigenous automobile company said the police had withdrawn the charges against its Chief Executive Officer.

“Our attention has been drawn to a false publication on some news medium purporting that the Nigeria Police applied for a bench warrant to arrest the boss of Innoson Motors, Chief Innocent Chukwuma, and we, as a result, deem it proper to respond and put the records straight.

“First, a bench warrant can only be applied for and, if the necessary conditions are met, be issued by the Court in a pending charge. As it is, there is no charge pending against Innoson Motors Boss – Chief Innocent Chukwuma, his company, Charles Chukwu, Maximian Chukwura, Mistsui Osk Lines and Anajekwu Sunny. Although, in December 2015, the Inspector General of Police initiated Charge No: FHC/L/565C/2015 against Chief Innocent Chukwuma and 5 others, the Police through its instrument duly initialed and filed in the Court, in the same charge, on 17th February 2016 withdrew the charge to enable it to conclude investigation of the allegation leading to the charge”, Osigwe had said in a statement in November.

However, Mr Chukwuma was arrested today, a month after the indigenous automobile company denied that a bench warrant had been issued to arrest its chairman.

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