A former Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Ishaya Bamaiyi, on Friday told an Ikeja High Court that Fred Ajudua, alleged serial conman, defrauded him in spite swearing with his son’s life.
Bamaiyi made the disclosure while being cross-examined by Ajudua’s, Mr Olalekan Ojo, at the resumed hearing in allegedly swindling of Bamaiyi of 8.4 million dollars at the Kirikiri Maximum Prisons by Ajudua in 2004.
Friday’s session was the fifth in the proceedings in which Bamaiyi was cross-examined by the defence since giving his evidence-in-chief on Nov. 26, 2018.
Responding to Ojo’s question on why he did not ask for receipts from Ajudua as proof of receiving the funds, Bamaiyi said that he trusted Ajudua not to defraud him.
He noted that his trust was further strengthened when Ajudua swore with his son’s life not to defraud him.
“I trusted him completely; you don’t understand the concept and level of trust I had.
“I’m a father and a grandfather. I understand these things. If as a father he (Ajudua) swears that his only son should die if he should defraud me; that is more than sufficient receipt.
“When he defrauded me, I initially kept quiet. It was after he ran away for six years that I decided to complain.
The former army chief said that the funds given to Ajudua for payment for the legal services of Chief Afe Babalola (SAN), were brought to him in prison by family members, friends and staff.
He said that prison rules allowed money meant for the payment of legal representation to be brought into the premises of the prison, adding that he recorded every money brought to the prison in his diary.
“Sometimes money was put in our food containers. The money is counted in the presence of the prison officers, so it was not hidden.
“My lord, I said it before and let me repeat it, when visitors come with the food containers, he who brings the food will taste it so that they will not poison the inmate.
“The food container has food on top; that is the one they will taste. Money is kept underneath the container.
“To me, the counting of the money is a record; the prison authorities knew about this money and constitutes records to the prison authorities.
“I can remember the specific amount each person brought; my former ADC, Timothy Chechet, brought one million dollars on two different occasions,” he said.
He said the individuals who brought some of the foreign currencies, gave statements to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) confirming that they brought money to the Kirikiri Maximum Prisons.
Explaining the source of the funds, Bamaiyi said that the money was given to him by friends who did not want their identity disclosed.
He also said that the funds were sourced from his personal savings, property and farming businesses, adding that some of the funds were withdrawn from his account at defunct Nal Merchant Bank.
Following the revelation, Ojo requested for a copy of Bamaiyi’s statement of account, saying that the prosecution had not frontloaded a copy of the statement to the defence.
On his part, the prosecuting counsel for EFCC, Mr Tope Banjo, said that an additional proof of evidence containing the requested bank statement would be filed in court by the prosecution at an adjourned date.
The Judge, Justice Josephine Oyefeso, adjourned the case until Sep. 16 and 19, 2019, for continuation of trial.
According to the prosecution, Ajudua was incarcerated at the Kirikiri Maximum Prisons over alleged fraud while Bamaiyi was incarcerated over alleged involvement in the attempted murder of Mr Alex Ibru, late publisher of The Guardian Newspaper.
The prosecution alleged that Ajudua had alongside some accomplices, approached Bamaiyi in the prison in 2004.
The defendant had allegedly convinced Bamaiyi that he could hire the legal services of Chief Afe Babalola (SAN) to help secure his freedom from Kirikiri, and Ajudua allegedly fraudulently collected 8.4 million dollars as the legal fees.
When the alleged fraud came to light, the law chambers of Afe Babalola and Co. issued a disclaimer disassociating itself from the case.
Court sentences applicant to 1 year in prison for damaging AEDC transformer
A Kabusa Grade I Area Court on Wednesday sentenced an applicant, Ibrahim Ali, to one year in prison for damaging a transformer belonging to the Abuja Electricity Distribution Company(AEDC).
The Judge, Ibrahim Kagarko, sentenced Ali, after he pleaded guilty to mischief and theft.
Kagarko did not give the convict an option to pay any fine.
Earlier, the Prosecution Counsel, Mahmud Lawal, informed the court Mr Effiong Etim, who works with AEDC, reported the case at the Garki Police station, FCT on Aug. 20.
Lawal told the court that the complainant reported that on Aug.20, Ali removed a transformer panel door from the AEDC facility located at Arochukwu Street, Garki II,
Lawal informed the court that in the course of police investigation, it was discovered that the convict had caused inestimable damage to the transformer.
The convict, he also said, confessed to the crime when interrogated by the police.
The offence, he added, contravened the provisions of sections 327 and 287 of the Penal Code Law.
edited by Sadiya Hamza
Court remands 3 accused persons over alleged armed robbery in Kano
A Kano Chief Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday ordered that three accused persons, Namaska Haruna, 25, Wada Ibrahim, 30, and Abdulsalam Ibrahim, 20, be remanded in prison custody over alleged armed robbery.
The defendants, who reside in Kiru Local Government Area of Kano State, are standing trial on a two-count charge of criminal conspiracy and armed robbery, contrary to Section 97 and 398 of the Penal code.
The Chief Magistrate, Muhammad Jibril, ordered the remand of the defendants in prison custody pending legal advice from office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).
Jibril adjourned the case until Sept. 5, for further mention.
Earlier, the prosecutor, Insp. Pogu Lale, had told the court that the defendants committed the offence on July 11, at about 2:30 a.m in Kiru local government area.
He alleged that the three defendants and six others now at large, armed themselves with dangerous weapons and stormed the house of 45-year-old Muhammed Kabiru, at Maska Village, threatened to kill or kidnap the victim and in the process robbed him of his valuables.
He listed the dangerous weapon the defendants used to attack their victim to include gun, pistol and sticks.
The prosecutor told he court that the defendants dispossessed their victim of N235,000, 38 pieces of peak milk valued at N47,000, six cartons of Maltina valued at N30,000.
Other properties collected from the victim are four Tecno handset valued N30,000, one radio valued N2,400 and five memory cards valued N7,000.
The defendants, however, denied committing the offence.
Presidential Election Tribunal reserves judgment
The Presidential Election Petition on Wednesday reserved judgement in the petition challenging the election of Muhammadu Buhari as president.
Buhari was declared the winner of the Feb. 23 presidential election, with over 15 million votes as against Atiku’s 11, 262,978 votes.
details later ………
Police arraign 2 drivers for allegedly stealing chemicals worth N1.1m
The Prosecution Counsel, Sgt. Abdulkareem Mustapha, told the court that the defendants and others at large, committed the offence on July 20 at the Rock Foundation Logistic Limited, Ota, Ogun.
Mustapha alleged that the defendants being the driver in charge of a lorry with registration number AAA 777XG diverted the company’s chemical material valued N1.1 million to another place.
The offence, he said, contravened the provisions of sections 390 (4(6) (8b) and 516 of the Criminal Code, Laws of Ogun,2006.
They, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.
The Chief Magistrate, Mr Mathew Akinyemi, admitted the defendants to bail in the sum of N400,000 each with two sureties each in like sum.
He also ordered that the sureties must reside within the court’s jurisdiction and be gainfully employed with evidence of tax payment to the Ogun Government.
Akinyemi adjourned the case until Sept.9 for further hearing.
Security guard docked for allegedly defiling 10-year-old girl
A 33-year-old security guard, Suleiman Mohammed, on Wednesday appeared in a Badagry Chief Magistrates’ Court in Lagos State, for allegedly defiling a 10-year-old girl.
Mohammed, whose address was not provided, is charged with two counts of rape and threat to life.
The Prosecution Counsel, ASP Akpan Nkem, told the court that the defendant committed the offence on April 27 and Aug. 11, at Awolola Str., Adele Era, Ijanikin area of Lagos.
Nkem alleged that the defendant defiled the minor and threatened to kill her using his charms.
The offence, he said, contravened the provisions of sections 168 and 56 of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State, 2015.
The Chief Magistrate, Mr Patrick Adekomiya, admitted the defendant to bail in the sum of N300, 000 with two sureties in like sum.
He adjourned the case until Sept.16, for hearing.