- Monday, 30 July 2012
- By The Nation
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Monday arraigned more oil marketers and an oil company before a Lagos High Court, Ikeja, for fuel subsidy fraud. Those arraigned before the court presided over by Justice Adeniyi Onigbanjo are Oluwaseun Ogunbambo, Habila Theck and Fargo Petroleum and Gas Limited.
However, one accused person, Olugbenga Adesanya, could not be arraigned along with others because he is "still at large."
The accused persons and the company are among 17 oil marketers and seven oil companies indicted in the fuel subsidy probe and slated for prosecution by the anti- graft agency.
According to the charge sheet, the accused persons are facing a six- count charge bordering on conspiracy, obtaining money by false pretence, forgery and use of false documents.
Though the agency had earlier preferred a seven- count charge against the accused persons, one of the prosecuting counsels, Mr. Francis Usani, applied to the court to drop one of the charges.
The offences, according to the EFCC, are contrary to section 8 and punishable under section 1 (1) (2) (3) of the Advanced Fee Fraud and other Fraud Related Offences Act, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria.
The commission added that the offences are contrary to sections 363 and 364 of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State of Nigeria No 11, Laws of Lagos State 2011.
The EFCC alleged that the accused persons and the oil company “on or about February 10, 2012, with intent to defraud, conspired with one Olugbenga Adesanya, still at large, to fraudulently obtain N976, 653,110.28 from the Federal Government of Nigeria by falsely representing.
The said sum, according to the EFCC, represented subsidy accruing on importation of 13,627,084 litres of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) purportedly purchased from Sealac Petroleun Limited and imported into Nigeria through MT Diplomat Ex mT Milleura which representation they knew to be false."
When the charges were read, the accused person pleaded not guilty to each of the six count charge.
Counsel to the defendants, Mr. Babajide Koku (SAN) told the court that he has filed two applications for the bail of the accused persons, one of which was dated July 25, 2012 and forwarded to court last week while a new one filed on Monday morning.