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Alleged fraud: Judge’s absence stalls Fayose’s trial

The money laundering trial of a former Governor of Ekiti State, Ayodele Fayose, on Monday, stalled before a Federal High Court Lagos as the trial court did not sit.

The trial, which was fixed for continuation on Monday, could not proceed as the trial judge Justice Chukwujekwu Aneke was said to be attending a conference.

A new date will now be agreed on by the parties in due course.

The former Governor is being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for N6.9 billion fraud and money laundering charges.

On October 22. 2018, he was arraigned alongside his company, Spotless Investment Ltd, on 11 counts bordering on fraud and money laundering offences.

Fayose who pleaded not guilty to the charges was granted bail on October 24, 2018.

EFCC had in December 2021 called its 11th witness, one Mrs Joanne Tolulope, who had narrated how Abiodun Agbele, an associate of Fayose, bought properties worth several millions.

NAN reports that during the trial before Justice Olatoregun, the prosecution had called witnesses, from several commercial banks, as well as a former Minister of State for Defence, Sen. Musiliu Obanikoro.

According to the charge, on June 17, 2014, Fayose and one Abiodun Agbele were said to have taken possession of the sum of N1.2 billion, for purposes of funding his gubernatorial election campaign in Ekiti, which sum they reasonably ought to have known formed part of crime proceeds.

Fayose was alleged to have received a cash payment of the sum of five million dollars, (about N1.8 billion) from the then Minister of State for Defence, Sen. Musiliu Obanikoro, without going through any financial institution.

He was also said to have retained the sum of N300 million in his account and took control of the aggregate sums of about N622 million.

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