N700m scam: Court grants EFCC leave to seize 44 properties
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has received the leave of a Federal High Court to seize the properties of eight persons accused of defrauding Union Bank of Nigeria Plc of about N700 million.
Justice F.A Olubanjo of the Federal High Court, Umuahia, Abia State, has granted an interim order to EFCC seize 44 assets of the persons allegedly involved in the crime. .
The order also covers the freezing of the account of one of the accused persons with a credit balance of N30million.
The anti-corruption agency had on January 4, 2013 sought the leave of the court to seize the assets of the accused persons in tandem with the provisions of sections 28 and 34 of the EFCC (Establishment Act) 2004 and Section 13(1) of the Federal High Court Act, 2004.
The accused, who are facing separate charges bordering on criminal conspiracy, stealing by fraudulent conversion, money laundering and fraud, are Chikezie Agbara, Amarachi Iroha, Lucy Nwosu and Glo Chizzy International Limited.
Others are Nneamaka Iheabuchi, Nnamdi Nwosu, Ikechukwu Nwosu, Chukwu Chikezie and Oliver Ogbujie.
Mr. Olubanjo ordered as follows, 'That all assets as listed in schedule 1 to 5 of the ex-parte originating summons being proceeds of economic and financial crimes held directly by or for the benefit of or on behalf of the persons named in schedule 1 to 5 of this ex-parte originating summons be temporarily attached pending the conclusion of trial in charge Nos. FHC/UM/CR/30/2012-FRN VS. Chikezie Neoma Agbara and 3 Others; and FHC/UM/CR/77/2012-FRN VS. Chikezie Neoma Agbara and 6 Others'
The Judge also ordered the manager or ' such other person in control of the financial institution in schedule 6 of this ex-parte originating summons i.e. Zenith Bank Plc, to freeze all accounts held directly, indirectly, by or for the benefit, and on behalf of one Oliver Ogbujie within Nigeria more particularly account No. 2006909505.'
A breakdown of the assets affected by this order is as follows: a four bedroom apartment at World Bank Hosing Estate, Umuahia; twin two bedroom apartment at Amakama, Umuahia; one storey building of four flats at Umudike, Umuahia; an undeveloped plot of land at Government Station layout, Umuahia; another undeveloped parcel of land at Udume Ibeku Umuahia North LGA; uncompleted Hotel project at Winners Road, near House of Assembly Complex, Umuahia; a 2002 ModelToyota Camry and 2002 Model Toyota Corolla cars - all belonging to Chikezie Agbara
The properties belonging to Nneamaka Raphael Ibeabuchi include, five bedroom duplex with two rooms Boys Quarters at Umuagoro, Umudike, Umauhia; a block of five self-contained students Hostel at Umuagoro, Umudike, Umauhia; 3-bedroom bungalow at Plot UM/964, Health Centre Road, World Bank Housing Estate, Umuahia, among other assets.
Assets belonging to Nnamdi Nwosu include, one storey uncompleted block of 16-room students residential apartment at Unuahu/ Ofeke Ndum Ibeku, Umudeke Umuahia. A parcel of land at Umuohu Azueke, Umudike, Umuahia belonging to Ikechukwu Nwosu was also attached.