Lawyer arraigned over N36m fraud, remanded in prison

8 years ago by: Oghenekaro Tejiri
-- (f) at 23-05-2012 08:10PM

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), on Tuesday, arraigned a legal practitioner, Mr Odi Okereke Ajike, before a Lagos High Court sitting in Ikeja for allegedly stealing N36million belonging to another lawyer, Mr Emeka Nwajiuba.

Okereke was arraigned before Justice Lateefa Okunnu, on a three-count charge of stealing, fraud and fraudulent conversion of the money said to have been entrusted in his care and that of his company, Natuzzi Nigeria Limited, for safe keeping.

According to the anti- graft commission, Okereke and his company, Natuzzi Nigeria Limited are found guilty of conspiracy to steal contrary to section 516 of the Criminal Code Cap C17, Vol 2 Laws of Lagos State of Nigeria 2003.

Okereke was alleged to have issued a dud cheque valued at N4million on January 21, 2012 with the intent to defraud Nwajiuba.

He was also alleged to have, with intent to defraud and steal, fraudulently converted the N36 million through his Diamond Bank account at Victoria Island.

This offence, according to the commission, is contrary to section 8 (b) and (c) of the Criminal Code Law Cap C 17 Laws of Lagos State of Nigeria 2003.

The anti-graft agency alleged that the defendant issued the N4million cheque to Nwajiuba knowing he had insufficient funds in his account.

The issuance of the dud cheque, according to EFCC, is contrary to section (1) (1) of the Dishonoured Cheque Act, Cap D11 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004.

The accused pleaded not guilty to the three- count charge while counsel for the EFCC, Mr Collins Ugwu, applied for a trial date and asked that the defendant be remanded in prison custody.

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