EFCC arraigns judge over N58.5m fraud

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has arraigned an Adamawa State Area Court Judge, Suleiman Elkana, before Justice Balkisu Aliyu of the Federal High Court Yola on a three-count charge of conspiracy and obtaining the sum of N58.5million by false pretense.
Elkana who is also the Chairman of Justice Multi-purpose Cooperative Society Limited, was arraigned along with the society’s secretary, Solomon Philip, over the alleged fraud.
The complainant, Israel Nwagbo, an employee of Coscharis Motors, allegedly entered into a contract with the Justice Multi-Purpose Cooperative Society for the supply of 1,846 units of TVC motorcycles to its members.
According to Nwagbo, there was an agreement for payment for the motorcycles through monthly deductions from members’ salaries.
However, the accused persons allegedly diverted the said amount for their personal use.
Count two of the charge reads, ‘‘That you, Honourable Suleiman Elkana, Solomon Maken and one Amina Musa, now deceased, sometime in September, 2010 at Yola Adamawa State within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court did obtain by false pretense 446 units of TVC motorcycles valued at Fifty-Seven Million, Nine Hundred and Eighty Thousand Naira (N57,980,000.00) from Coscharis Motors Limited under the false pretense that the said TVC motorcycles would be disbursed to members of the Justice Multi-purpose Co-operative Society, Adamawa State, which you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Sections 1 (1) ( a) and 1 (3) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, 2006 respectively.”
The accused persons pleaded not guilty when the charge was read to them.
In view of their pleas, the prosecution counsel, Isreal Akande, asked for a trial date.
However, the defense counsel, Desmond Adebole, moved an application for the bail of the accused persons.
Consequently, Justice Aliyu granted the accused persons bail in the sum of N5 million each and one surety who must be resident within the jurisdiction of the court and must be verified by the commission.
The case was then adjourned to September 26, 27 and 28, 2016 for the commencement of trial.