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Court orders Emefiele to forfeit another set of properties worth N11bn


Court orders Emefiele to forfeit another set of properties worth N11bn

Story from Ayuba AHMAD

In what seems like an endless trend in his forfeiture of properties ordered by the courts, the immediate past Central Bank Governor, Godwin Emefiele, has been ordered by a federal High Court to temporarily forfeit properties estimated at N11, 140, 000,000.00 to the federal government.

Justice Chukwujekwu Aneke of the federal High Court sitting in Lagos, on Wednesday, granted the order of forfeiture after listening to and granting the prayers of parte motion filed by the lawyer to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Rotimi Oyedepo (SAN).

READ ALSO: Emefiele’s alleged financial misconducts exposed in detailed investigation report

Mostly located in the highbrow neighborhoods of Abuja, Rotimi Oyedepo had informed the judge that Emefiele was suspected of having bought the choice properties by proxy with the proceeds of fraud.

The EFCC also named three CBN Staff, Obayemi Teben, Akomolafe Adebayo and Olubunmi Makinde as Emefiele’s accomplices who used their positions and influence to secure retail and special allocation of foreign exchange to different companies in exchange for kickbacks.

The Judge directed the EFCC to publish the order in the newspapers to allow any interested party in the matter to come to court to show cause why the final order of forfeiture should not be made. He then adjourned the case to June 21, for the hearing of the motion for final forfeiture.

It will be recalled that, in a similar verdict on the 25th May, 2024, Justice Yelim Bogoro, also of the Federal High Court, Lagos had ordered the interim forfeiture of $4.7m, N830m, and some property assets linked to the embattled former CBN governor.

The monies forfeited to the Federal Government in the interim were said to be warehoused in First Bank, Titan Bank, and Zenith Bank in the names of Omoile Anita Joy; Deep Blue Energy Service Limited; Exactquote Bureau De Change Ltd; Lipam Investment Services Limited; Tatler Services Limited; Rosajul Global Resources Ltd and, TIL Communication Nigeria Ltd.

While the properties forfeited in the interim to the Federal Government include 94 Units of an 11-floor building under Construction at 2, Otunba Elegushi 2nd Avenue (formerly Club) Road, Ikoyi, Lagos; AM Plaza, an 11-floor office space situated on 1E, Otunba Adedoyin Crescent, Lekki Peninsula Scheme 1, Lagos.

The temporarily forfeited properties also included the Imore Industrial Park 1, Esa Street, Imoore Land purchased with (Deep Bive Industrial Town, Oriade LCDA, Amuwo Odofin LGA, Lagos, Mitrewood and Tatler Warehouse (Furniture Plant at Bogije) near Elemoro Lagos, Owolomi Village, Ibeju-Lekki LGA, Lagos and two properties purchased from Chevron Nigeria, Closed PFA Fund, Block B. Lot twin completed property in Lakes Estate, Lekki, Lagos.

A few days later, on the 29th of May, 2024, another judge of the court, Justice Ayokunle Faji had also ordered the interim forfeiture of the sum of $1, 426. 175.14 allegedly linked to Emefiele to the Federal Government.

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