Court Orders Seizure Of $1.4m Linked To Emefiele


The Federal High Court, Ikoyi, Lagos, presided over by Justice Ayokunle Faji has directed the interim forfeiture of a sum to the tune of $1,426,175.14m linked to the former governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele.

Justice Faji also ordered the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to publish the interim forfeiture order in a national newspaper for anyone interested in the money sought to be forfeited to appear before the court and show cause within 14 days why the final order of forfeiture of the said sum should not be made in favour of the Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN).

The judge arrived at the decision while granting an Exparte Motion designated FHC/L/CS/232/2024, moved by Mrs Bilikisu Buhari-Bala, the counsel for the anti-graft agency.

The sum forfeited in the interim is said to be in Donatone Limited’s account number 2000000500 domiciled in Titan Bank Limited.

While praying to Justice Faji for the orders, Mrs Buhari-Bala hinted to the court that the orders sought are pursuant to Section 17 of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud-related Offences Act No. 14, 2006, and Section 44 (2)(B) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

The anti-graft agency’s lawyer equally argued that “This Honourable Court has the statutory powers under the provisions of Section 17 of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, 2006 to grant the reliefs being sought.

“That the funds sought to be forfeited are reasonably suspected to be proceeds of unlawful activities.”

The lawyer further notified Justice Faji that the Motion Exparte is supported by an affidavit deposed to by one David Jayeoba, an investigator with the EFCC.

According to the affidavit, the deponent stated that the EFCC received credible and direct intelligence which led to the tracing of funds reasonably suspected to be proceeds of unlawful activities warehoused in the Donatone Limited (DL) Titan Trust Bank account, which funds are reasonably suspected to be part of proceeds of unlawful activities.

Jayeoba maintained that the anti-graft agency while investigating the alleged fraud purportedly executed by the former CBN boss alongside others, discovered a huge amount of money warehoused and concealed in the account of Donatone Limited, domiciled in Titan Trust Bank.

The deponent argued that investigation revealed that some of the brains behind the fraudulent concealment of funds reasonably suspected to have been proceeds of unlawful activities of the former Apex Bank’s helmsman are the natural individuals behind Donatone Limited; Uzeobo Anthony and Adebanjo Olurotimi, who are directors of Donatone Limited.

It would be recalled that Justice Yelim Bogoro of the same court had on May 25, 2024, ordered an interim forfeiture of $4.7m, N830m, and some properties/assets linked to Emefiele.

New Telegraph

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