By ADEJUWON OSUNNUYI
For alleged unlawful enrichment, a Federal High Court Judge, Justice Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia, alongside a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Chief Godwin Obla have appeared before a Lagos High Court sitting in Ikeja, Lagos today.
The duo were docked by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on a 30-counts charge that touches on pervertion of the course of justice and unawful enrichment.
At the commencement of the trial, the presiding judge, Justice Olatunde Oshodi asked both Justice Ofili-Agumogobia and Mr. Godwin Obla to stand in the dock.
In the charge designated LD/367/C/16, the anti-graft agency insisted that the defendants allegedly committed the offence on May 24, 2015, when they conspired to pervert the course of justice with the sum of N5 million.
The said sum according to the EFCC was said to have been transfered to one Nigel & Colive Ltd, in relation to a charge number FHC/L/C/482/10.
Specifically, the commission maintained that Justice Ajumogobia is the sole signatory to Nigel & Colive Ltd, adding that both defendants conspired to pervert the course of justice in contravention of the provisions of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State, 2011.
According to counts one to four, Obla (SAN) was particularly accused of offering gratification in the said sum, by transferring the money from his company’s account Obla & Co., domiciled with the United Bank for Africa, to Nigel & Colive.
The transfer according to the charge was made so as to restrain a public officer from acting in exercise of her official duties.
Count five of the charge stated that Justice Ajumogobia unlawfully enriched herself by receiving a transfer or the sum of N18 million from one Arkleem Oil and Gas Ltd, to her Diamond bank account.
According to counts 6 to 20 of the charge, the anti-graft agency argued that Justice Ajumogobia received a transfer of monies from various outlets to her Diamond bank account to the tune of over 788,000 dollars.
Even in counts 29, the Federal High Court judge was accused of forging a deed of assignment between a company, County City Bricks Dev. Co. Ltd and Nigel & Colive Ltd.
Justice Ajumogobia was equally alleged to have made a false statement to the EFCC, that she was on admission at one Gold Cross Hospital, located at Bourdillon, Ikoyi, which statement was found to be false.
The anti-graft agency insisted that the offences are contrary to the provisions of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State 2011 as well as the EFCC (establishment) Act, 2004.
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