Alleged $1.6bn fraud: EFCC files fresh charges against Diezani’s ally, Omokore, others

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Monday, filed additional 15 criminal charges against Jide Omokore, an ally of former Petroleum Minister, Diezani Alison-Madueke.

Others include two of his companies Atlantic Energy Brass Limited and Atlantic Energy Drilling Concept Limited; Messers Victor Briggs and Membere Abiye.

The charges were added in their on-going trial before Justice Nnamdi Dimgba of the Federal High Court, Abuja. They pleaded not guilty.

Omokore and the other defendants were already facing nine-count amended charges from the EFCC that border on alleged money laundering and procurement fraud to the tune of $1.6billion.

Led in evidence at today’s sitting by prosecution counsel, Rotimi Jacobs SAN, prosecution witness, Abdulrasheed Bawa, told the court, how huge monetary transactions transpired among the defendants.

The witness, an investigator and data analyst with the EFCC, revealed that sometime in 2013, the EFCC received a complaint from a non-governmental agency urging the Commission to investigate the activities of Diezani, adding that the transactions involved huge sums of money in United States dollars between the first defendant and his companies in respect of Strategic Alliance Agreement on OML 26, 30, 34 & 42.

According to the witness, the EFCC received intelligence from Nigeria Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) through the foreign based Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), on the alleged fraudulent transactions in dollars from the second and third defendants to one of their offshore companies.

Explaining further, Bawa told the court that the letters of the investigative activities were sent to NNPC, NPDC, Ministry of Petroleum Resources detailing the EFCC’s reports on the OML 26, 30, 34, 42, 4 38, & 41.

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The prosecution witness, further identified exhibit three-30, as correspondences between the EFCC and some of the companies.

Justice Dimgba adjourned the matter until March 23, 2020 for continuation of trial.


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