- Former AGF, Mohammed Adoke, is facing a fraud charge relating to the Malabu oil scandal
- The Malabu scandal involved the transfer of about $1.1 billion by oil multinationals, Shell and ENI, through the Nigerian government
- Adoke has asked a Federal High Court in Abuja to cancel arrest warrant which was issued against him for allegedly failing to show up for his arraignment
Mohammed Adoke, a former minister of justice and attorney general of the federation, has asked a Federal Capital Territory high court in Jabi, to vacate a bench warrant issued against him.
Premium Times reports that the court had ordered the arrest of Adoke alongside former minister of petroleum, Duazia Louya Etete, popularly known as Dan Etete and four foreigners, Raph Wetzels, Casula Roberto, Pujato Stefano, and Burrato Sebastiano.
Legit.ng gathered that the court's order had followed their alleged failure to turn up for their arraignment in a fraud charge relating to the Malabu oil scandal.
Ruling on the ex-parte motion filed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on April 17, Justice D. Z. Senchi, ordered that the Nigeria police, the INTERPOL and any other law enforcement agency should arrest them anywhere they were found.
It was however, gathered that in a motion on notice filed before the court through his lawyer, Mike Ozekhome on Tuesday night, April 23, Adoke told the court to vacate the order on the grounds that the court lacked the jurisdiction to have granted the order in the first instance.
The EFCC had since 2017 pressed charges against Shell Nigeria exploration production co. ltd, Nigeria Agip exploration limited, Eni Spa, Raph Wetzels, Casula Roberto, Pujato Stefeno, Burrato Sebastiano, Etete, doke, Aliyu Abubakar and Malabu oil and gas limited.
In the suit marked: FCT/HC/CR/124/17, all the defendants repeatedly failed to appear before the court. Following their repeated absence in court, the EFCC through its counsel, Aliyu Yusuf, brought a motion praying the court for a warrant of their arrest, and an order for leave to execute the warrant outside of the jurisdiction of the court.
It was gathered that on April 17, according to the EFCC, Judge Senchi granted the prayers of the anti-graft agency, and ruled that the Nigeria Police, the INTERPOL and any other law enforcement agency ”should arrest them anywhere they were found including outside jurisdiction of the Federal Capital Territory, (FCT) High Court”.
The Malabu scandal involved the transfer of about $1.1 billion by oil multinationals, Shell and ENI, through the Nigerian government to accounts controlled by Etete. From accounts controlled by Etete, about half the money ($520 million) went to the accounts of companies controlled by Abubakar Aliyu, popularly known in Nigeria as the owner of AA oil.
Anti-corruption investigators and activists suspected he fronted for top officials of the Goodluck Jonathan administration as well of officials of Shell and ENI.
The transaction was authorised in 2011 by Jonathan through some of his cabinet ministers, and the money was payment for OPL 245, one of Nigeria’s richest oil blocks.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had previously reported that a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja ruled in favour of Adoke, that he could not be held liable for acting out the directive of former president, Goodluck Jonathan.
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