N5.3bn Fraud: Court Issues Bench Warrant Against Ex-Enugu Gov, Nnamani

A Federal High Court, Lagos, today issued a bench warrant against the former governor of Enugu state, Dr. Chimaroke Nnamani.

The court presided over by Justice (Professor) Chuka Obiozor, made the order, due to the failure of the former governor to be in court today, as ordered by the court to take his plea in a criminal charge filed against him by the Federal government of Nigeria, over alleged N5.3 billion fraud.

Justice Obiozor had on last Thursday, ordered that the former governor should appear before him to take his plea, on the alleged fraud.

At the resumed hearing of the matter today, Nnamani’s lawyer, Abubakar Samusudeen, informed the court of the inability of his client to be in court today, as he said he was yet to return from his medical treatment abroad.

Samusudeen urged the court for more days to enable his client to return from abroad to stand trial.

However, lawyer Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Kelvin Uzozie, urged the court to discountenance Nnamani lawyer’s applicant, saying that court order is meant to be obey

Ruling on the application, Justice Obiozor, conceded to the submission of the EFCC lawyer, and issued arrest warrant against Nnamani.

The judge rejected the plea by the defence lawyer for longer adjournment to enable the firm adequate time to contact Nnamani.

Justice Obiozor is the fourth judge to handle the case, which began in 2007.

The case has been handled by Justices Tijani Abubakar, Charles Archibong (retd.), and Mohammed Yunusa, who was suspended by the National Judicial Council over corruption allegations.

The trial has been stalled since July 5, 2015, when some of the defendants entered into a plea bargain and forfeited their assets before Justice Yunusa.

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