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Bank Boss, Atuche, Knows Faith Today Over N25.7 Billion Fraud

Bank Boss of the defunct PHB, Francis Atuche, knows faith today over alleged N25.7 Billion Fraud level against him by the EFCC before Ikeja High Court after three years of trial.

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Justice Lateefa Okunnu of a Lagos State High Court sitting in Ikeja is currently reading judgement in the N25.7 billion fraud suit against former Managing Director of the defunct Bank PHB Plc Francis Atuche, and his wife Elizabeth.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had in 2011 arraigned Atuche, his wife and the then financial officer of the moribund bank PHB Plc (now Keystone Bank), Mr. Ugo Anyanwu, over the alleged fraud.

After about three years into the trial, Atuche and co-defendants approached Court of Appeal to challenge their trial by the lower court for lack of jurisdiction.

In a judgement delivered in September 2016, the Appellate Court stopped the lower court from going ahead with the trial.

The appellate court also failed to quash the charges against Atuche, his wife and others but ordered Justice Okunnu to hands off the trial.

Read Also: Conman, Emmanuel Nwude Open Defense in Fraud Trial

The appellate court further directed the Chief Judge of Lagos State to re-assign the case to another judge.

Following the decision of the court of appeal, the EFCC approached the Supreme Court to set aside the decision of the lower court and order trial in the matter.

In an unanimous decision, the apex court overturned the decision of the appellate court.

The panel agreed that the lower court’s decisions on the matter was “perverse” and, therefore ought to be set aside.

Justice Ejembi Eko, who prepared and read the lead judgment of the apex court, said the order which the Court of Appeal made on September 23, 2016, for the remittance of case to the Lagos State Chief Judge for the purpose of re-assigning the case to another judge, was not aimed at serving the interest of justice.

Top Court News is a product of a dedicated Journalist, owner of I-Wahab Media The Publisher started his Journalism career with Murhi International TV, MiTV in 2003 before working with Radio Nigeria, Lagos Operation, as a Judicial Correspondent. He is presently the Vice Chairman of the National Association of Judicial Correspondent, NAJUC, Ikeja Branch and occupied same office with Nigeria Union of Journalist, NUJ, Radio Nigeria Chapel. topcourtnewsng.com is out to serve you with informative and educative News in the Judiciary sector. To put an end to the under reported activities of the sector among the three arms of government

BUSINESS

Court Stop Lekki Gardens Construction in Osborne Foreshore Estate

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Justice Nicholas Oweibo of a Federal High Court in Lagos has granted an order interim injunction restraining Lekki Gardens Estate Limited and Foreshore Waters Limited from constructing, developing, building or carrying out any further construction, development or building activities in Osborne Foreshore Estate II, Ikoyi, Lagos.

The judge order was sequel to an application filed by the Registered Trustees of Osborne and Foreshore Residents Association through their counsel, Mr Kemi Pinheiro, SAN.

Mr. Pinheiro asked the court to halt construction process on the properties situate at Block II Plot 2, Plot 7, Block 7, Plot 5,Block 6, Plot 17, Block 9, Plot 23, Block 9, Plot 17, Block 10, Plots 1A, 1B, 1C, Block 6, Plot 19, Block 6, Plot 12, Block 6, Plot 9A, Block 6, Plot 14, and Block 11, Plot 2, Signature One on Royal Palm Drive, Signature Two, Le Chateau, Insignia and Foreshore Towers on Acacia Road within the Estate or any other property currently being developed by the Respondents all within Osborne Foreshore Estate II.

Justice Oweibo restrained the two defendant applicants from predicating on any approvals granted by the 4th Defendant, (Lagos State Physical Planning Permit Authority) pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice for interlocutory injunction.

Also Read: https://topcourtnewsng.com/how-zenith-bank-frustrates-payment-of-50-million-contract/

He noted that upon reading the affidavit in support of the motion exparte for interim injunction and exhibits attached, sworn to by the Admin Manager of the Osborne Foreshore Phase II, Mrs Ifeoma Maduakor, the court found merits in the prayer and granted as pray.

Earlier, while presenting the application in a suit number; FHC/L/CS/755/2021 before the court, Mr. Pinheiro, SAN, argues that the actions of the defendants is against the policy of the Estate as a residential territory.

The defendant in the suit are National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency’s, Lekki Garden Estate Limited, Foreshore Waters Limited and Lagos State Physical Planning Permit Authority.

At today’s proceedings, the defendant failed to appear before the court to defend their position

Subsequently the judge adjourned till July 26 for the defense

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Danger Loom’s For Landlords in Akobi Crescent, Surulere as Efunloye Takes Possession

After the judgement of the State High Court delivered in 2013, which nullified Colonel Oyedele as the sole administrator, He didn’t appeal the judgement within the stipulated time require by law.

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The Family of Efunloye Tinubu has takes over property’s at Akobi Crescent, Surulere after legal tussle that lasted for three years before justice was granted to the Family.

A retired colonel, Tunde Oyedele had challenge the family members in a suit number, M/294/2010 asking court to declare him sole administrator of a land measuring 8.994 acres located at Akobi Crescent, off Fashoro Lane, Surulere.

After the judgement of the state High Court delivered in 2013, Colonel Oyedele didn’t appeal the judgement within the stipulated time require by law.

The development which makes the family to take possession of over fifty houses erected on the land as part of the 8.994 acres having not challenge the judgement.

The possession which was coordinate by Ikeja Court Sheriff, with the effort of the Nigeria Police followed strictly rules of engagement.

The Police from Area C, DPO Alakara Division mobilize their men in ensuring that the judgement possession was carried out peaceful.

Colonel Tunde Oyedele, in his evidence before the court by way of two depositions dated 23/06/11 and 11/07/11 which he adopted as his evidence in chief and are marked as Exhibits 1 and 2 respectively.

His testimony is that he is the owner of the vast area of land measuring 8.994 acres lying at Akobi Crescent, Off Fashoro Lane, Surulere in the Surulere Local Government Area of Lagos State which is covered by a Deed of Conveyance dated 03/02/1976 and registered as NO: 98 at page 98 in Volume 2263 at the Lands Registry Lagos.

That he purchased the subject matter from the late Madam lyalode Tinubu Family through one Garuba Bakare of Agbole Tinubu, Ojokodo, Abeokuta who acted for and on behalf of the vendor family.

That the subject matter formed a part of the land which originally belonged to late Madam lyalode Tinubu from time immemorial under the Yoruba native law and custom.

That she enjoyed undisputed possession of the land and exercised undisputed ownership thereon.

He further states that at all times material to the death of his vendor, and thereafter, Garuba Bakare was the Head of the Tinubu Family.

That upon the demise of Madam Iyalode Tinubu the appointment of Garuba Bakare as the Head of the Tinubu Family affirmed by the Supreme Court in Suit NO: M/35/1955.

That Garuba Bakare was appointed as the sole administrator of the Estate of the late Madam Iyalode Tinubu until new trustees were appointed.

That the Supreme Court judgement was subsequently re-affirmed by an order of the High Court of Lagos made on 03/08/1965 in Suit NO: M/3/1965 wherein Garuba Bakare was appointed the Head of the Tinubu Family and seven other persons made trustees over the estate of the late Madam lyalode Tinubu.

However in his ruling, Justice Atinuke Ipaye of a Lagos High Court in Ikeja dismissed the claimants arguement

“I am satisfied that the counter-claimants have established their clear and exclusive possession of the subject property as shown on Exhibits 21(a) (g), 29, and 30.

Under cross examination, since Colonel Tunde Oyedele allegedly purchased the subject matter in 1967, he did not erect any dwelling house or other structure on it, he also admitted that he has never alienated, sold or leased any portion of it to third parties.

That no street on the large expanse of land has been named after him. Equally, he was unable to state how much he alleged spent in his construction of the perimeter fence he allegedly constructed round the almost 9 acres of land.

He was unable to bring forward the builder of the said fence or show receipts of evidencing purchase of building materials for such an extensive construction.

Equally he was unable to mention the name and or whereabouts of the persons he allegedly placed on the land to weed same.

All this tend to show that at no material time was the defendant to counterclaim ever in possession of the said subject property and I so hold.

I believe the testimony of DW1 and DW 2, which I find credible that they are members of the Tinubu Family and have remained in possession of same from time immemorial.

The court hereby declare the sale of 8.998 acres of land by Garuba Bakare to the claimant, (Colonel Tunde Oyedele) as evidence by the Deed of Conveyance dated 3rd of February 1976 as invalid null and void.

Also the deed of conveyance dated 03/02/76 registered as NO: 98 at page 98 in volume 2263 is hereby been REVOKED.

Lastly the court hereby award the sum of one hundred thousand naira to the defendant as general damages for the claimant’s unlawful invasion and trespass to the defendant land in Idi Oro, Surulere, Lagos.

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How First Bank Officials Aid N900m POS Fraud

EFCC says the prime suspect connived with some Officials of First Bank to defraud customers the sum of N900m using a POS terminal allocated to him.

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Justice D. V Agishi of the Federal High Court, Jos, Plateau State has remanded a First Bank Official and a Petrol Station MD in Prison over N900m Point of Sale, POS, fraud allegations.

The judge gave the remand order after their arraignment pending the determination of their bail application at the next hearing.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, had arraigned the petrol station MD, Naankang Dawan with his companies, Taen Nigeria Ltd, and Lataen Engineering Ltd along line a First Bank Official, Moruf Tunji Olukanmi on thirty one count charges.

The charges borders on conspiracy, money laundering and obtaining N908, 108, 974.52 by false pretence.

The commission alleged that Mr Dawan who inherited some companies including a petrol station from his family, connived with some Officials of First Bank, including Moruf Tunji Olukanmi (fourth defendant), to defraud customers using a POS terminal allocated to him.

Also Read: https://topcourtnewsng.com/abuse-of-office-fidelity-banks-official-unlawful-freeze-customers-account/

They pleaded not guilty to the charges when read to them

Subsequently, the EFCC counsel Benjamin Manji asked for a trial date and that the suspects be remanded at the Correctional Centre pending trial.

But defence counsel, A.G Yirvoms informed the Court of a pending application for the bail of his clients.

Justice Agishi adjourned the case till July 26, 2021 for consideration of bail application and October 6, 2021 for trial.

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