A Federal High Court in Lagos yesterday ordered that one Malik Wakili should be remanded in prison custody for allegedly impersonating a former governor of the state and the Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, and defrauding the minister to the tune of N3.1m. Wakili, who was docked before Justice C.J. Aneke of the Federal High Court in Lagos, allegedly committed the offence in March this year.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) alleged that Wakili conspired with one Abdullahi Umar, said to be on the run, to fraudulently impersonate Fashola with intent to gain monetary advantage for themselves.
According to the EFCC, the defendant converted the total sum of N3, 106,216, being the value of the Air-miles Skywards Account Number EK248739282 of Fashola with the Emirate Airline which they said formed part the proceeds of unlawful activity, to wit: fraud.
The prosecution said Wakili acted contrary to sections 15(2)(a) and 27(1)(b) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act and was liable to be punished under sections 15(3) and 22(3)(a) of the same Act.
The defendant, however, pleaded not guilty to the three counts pressed against him. Justice Aneke adjourned till December 17, to rule on the bail application filed on his behalf by his lawyer, Eubena Anedu. The prosecuting counsel for the EFCC, Uduak Kufre, did not oppose the bail application but urged the judge to impose conditions that would ensure that the defendant attends the trial.
The judge ordered that Wakili should be remanded in the prison custody pending the ruling on his bail application.
Credit: Daily Trust