Court Dismisses Fraud Case Against Ex-NBA President, Says EFCC Failed to Establish Any Case

Court Dismisses Fraud Case Against Ex-NBA President, Says EFCC Failed to Establish Any Case

  • The immediate past president of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Paul Usoro is now free from the EFCC
  • Usoro has had a running battle with the anti-graft commission over an alleged fraud case for almost two years
  • The case has now been dismissed by Judge Rilwan Aikawa at a Federal High Court sitting in Lagos

PAY ATTENTION: Join Telegram channel! Never miss important updates!

Lagos - A Lagos Division of the Federal High Court has discharged and acquitted the immediate past president of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Paul Usoro, of the fraud charge filed against him.

The N4.2billion fraud charge was filed against Usoro by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Paul Usoro
Paul Usoro is now a free man per a Federal High Court ruling. Photo credit: Paul Usoro
Source: Facebook

PAY ATTENTION: Install our latest app for Android, read the best news on Nigeria’s #1 news app

Premium Times reports that Judge Rilwan Aikawa held that the anti-graft agency failed to establish any prima facie case against Usoro that would warrant him to enter a defence.

Read also

Supreme Court dashes ex-NNPC GMD’s hopes, dismisses appeal against forfeiture

He noted that the penal code, under which the NBA chieftain was charged, is not applicable to southern states, that is, Lagos and Akwa-Ibom, which were said to be the locations of the alleged offences.

His submission:

“On the whole, I hold that the prosecution has failed to establish any prima facie case. Accordingly, the defendant is hereby discharged and acquitted.”

At the early stages of the case, had reported that Justice Aikawa through his pronouncement, released the passport of Usoro, to allow him to attend to his foreign engagements as the then president of the NBA.

The application was granted after Usoro’s lawyer, Wole Olanipekun (SAN) allayed the EFCC’s fears by saying that in case of any clash between the trial date and his travel date, the trial date will prevail.

The EFCC counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo who did not oppose the grant of the application based on Olanipekun’s undertaking that the trial date is sacrosanct however urged the court to mandate the defendant to notify the EFCC anytime he wants to travel out of the country.

Read also

Just in: Trouble for fraudsters as EFCC finally launches mobile app for reporting crimes

Meanwhile, judges of the Federal High Court will commence their annual vacation on Monday, July 26.

The date is the same slated for the hearing of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu's case and lasts till Tuesday, September 17, although it is not sure if the start of the vacation will affect the trial of the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra.

A vacation notice was issued by the chief information officer of the Federal High Court, Catherine Christopher, in Abuja, on Monday, July 12.


Online view pixel