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Court Adjourned Trial Of Punch ED Azubike To December 2

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Justice Mojisola Dada of a Special Offences Court in Ikeja has adjourned the trial of former Executive Director of the Punch Newspaper, Azubike Ishekwene, and Olalekan Abdul till December 2.

The judge gave the adjournment at the instance of the defense counsel, Mr. Adeyinka Olumide-Fusika (SAN), who pray for adjournment to enable him present series of letter written to Keystone Bank by Olalekan Abdul.

At the resumption of trial today, the Economic and Financial Crime Commission, EFCC, Counsel, Mohammed Idris led in evidence, a Keystone Bank Officer, Oluwaseun Alademomi who testified on various bank documents.

Azubuike was charged alongside Olalekan Abdul, Adeyinka Adewale (absent) and Morakinyo Bolanle (now at large).

The duo were arraigned on an amended 15-count charge, bordering on forgery, conspiracy to forge, using false documents, making documents without authority and obtaining money by false pretence.

Read Also: EFCC Arraigns Former Unity Bank Manager Victor Udoh Over Fraud

EFCC told court that the defendants used a false document titled: “Board Resolution of Cleanserve Integrated Energy Solution Limited” dated 27th day of September, 2010 to open an account with Keystone Bank Plc formerly known has Bank PHB as genuine.

The prosecutor alleged that the defendants with intent to defraud and obtain credit facility for Cleanserve Integrated Energy Solution in the sum of N350,000,000.00 by false pretence from Wema Bank by falsely representing to them that the “Board Resolution of Cleanserve Integrated Energy Solution” dated 14th December, 2010 as genuine which representations they knew to be false.

The defendants, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge preferred against them by the EFCC.

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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

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Firm Cries Out Over Alleged Invasion of its Property

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A company, Rockston Shelter Company Ltd has appealed to Inspector General of Police, IGP, to swift into action to curtail abuse of power in breach of public peace over action taken by his men on forged Supreme Court judgement.

In a petition written to the IGP by the company through their lawyer, Barrister Giwa Amu, the company alleged that one Mr Kunle Awoma of Adamakin Investment Works Ltd unlawful use policemen to take possession of all properties belong to Rockston Shelter Company Ltd.

According to the lawyer, the Supreme Court judgement of July 14, 2000 in Suit No: SC/48/1992 relied upon by the policemen to execute, and proceeded to forcefully and criminally take possession of the company properties is forged documents.

Barrister Amu stated that on the 2nd of December, 2021 Mr Kunle Awoma of Adamakin Investment Works Ltd led a group of twenty Mobile Policemen and Soldiers into the company’s site at Olopameta Community, Hopeville Estate Waterfront, Sangotedo, Ibeju-Lekki, Lagos State alleging that they have a Supreme Court Judgment to execute, and they forcefully take possession.

Read Also: NDLEA Arraigns 3 ‘Akala Boys’ Over 803kg Marijuana

The lawyer said that when his firm applied for a certified true copy of the said Supreme Court judgement it revealed that there was no such judgment and what was shown by the suspects is a forged document.

He stated that the activity of the suspect and his cohorts is capable of destroying investor confidence in Lagos State and may lead to a breach of the public peace and a breakdown of law, if not checked.

Rockston Shelter Company Ltd is therefore urging the IGP to use his good office to intiate a detailed investigation into the matter with a view to bringing the suspects to Justice.

The firm stated that late Efunroye Tinubu and the family trustee, Adamakin Investment & Works Limited), have no court judgment in their favour and no valid or legal allocation of land from the Lagos State government.

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N7bn Illegal Charges by Zenith Bank: Court Fixes Judgement Day

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A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has fixed thirteenth of this month to deliver judgement in a suit over about seven billion naiira illegal charges been deducted by Zenith Bank in a customer account.

The suit was instituted by a Nigerian independent oil marketer, Olushola Anthony Adejuyigbe against Zenilth Bank Plc.

The date was fixed by Justice Ayokunle Faji on October 29, 2021, after parties adopted their final written addresses.

It would be recalled that Adejuyigbe alongside his company, Tonique Oil Services Limited, had in 2018 instituted a suit designated FHC/L/CS/1584/2012, against Zenith Bank Plc, over alleged illegal and excessive charges to the tune of N6, 441, 369, 617.73 billion.

In his amended statement of claim, Adejuyigbe through his counsel, Lanre Ogunlesi (SAN) revealed that in the course of its business activities, his company, Tonique Oil Services Limited obtained several credit facilities from Zenith Bank PLC while he pledged three of his properties as securities for the loan facilities.

Read Also: How Zenith Bank Frustrates Payment of $50 million Contract 

The oil merchant further stated that three different transactions leading to the legal battle occurred in his company’s Current Account where the alleged excess and illegal interest and charges were discovered and that upon discovery of the said charges, the company demanded a reversal but Zenilth Bank bluntly refused.

He also stated that a forensic accounting firm was engaged to scrutinize and analyse his company’s account, and it was then discovered that between August 2006 and December 2013, excess interest and charges on the company by Zenith Bank Plc had accumulated to the said sum.

Adejuyigbe is contending that he is not indebted to the bank, rather the bank has overcharged him to several billions of Naira.

He urged the court to declare that Zenith Bank, being a bank within the and control of CBN cannot charge interest on any facilities granted to him beyond the official approved policy rate of the Central Bank of Nigeria.

But Zenith Bank in its statement of defence, with its statement on oath sworn to by Senior Assistant Manager internal control and Audit Department of Zenith Bank, Vincent Ohanugo and filed by its lawyers, Ajibola Lawal-Akapo and others, denied almost all the plaintiff’s claims and stated that the company was granted several loans which include: ₦2.5 billion regular commercial paper; $36 million import finance facility; $6, 648 million commercial paper/usance facility; $9million import finance facility via usance facility and $11million short term import facility of ₦500 million.

Also Read: Loan Facility’s Reconciliation: Stallion & Zenith Bank To Be Audited

The bank also stated that the plaintiff authorized Zenith Registrars Plc to take steps to purchase the shares of the bank on its behalf, while also pledging 3.5million and 17,154,300 units of the shares respectively, in favour of the bank and authorized the bank to sell them to recoup part of the credit facilities the bank granted.

Zenith Bank also said the allegation of unethical conduct, lack of competence and professionalism against it by the plaintiff was made out of malice, confusion and frustration on the part of the plaintiffs.

The bank therefore urged the court to dismiss the suit for been frivolous and same amounting to abuse of court process.

 

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ASPMDA Election: Judge Decry Recurring Executive Disobedience to Valid Court Orders

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Justice A. Lewis-Allagoa of a Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has ordered the Registered Members of Auto Spare Parts and Machinery Dealers Association, ASPMDA, and Lagos State government to maintain status quo pending the suit over its association’s election.

Justice Lewis-Allagoa who reiterated the order earlier granted on July 22, 2021, by his learned judge, Justice P. O. Lifu, directed that all parties must respect the court order, while condemning executive rascality.

The judge ordered the ASPMDA not to conduct the association’s election pending when the matters before it are fully determined.

Justice Lewis-Allagoa emphasized that the representation by the Counsel’s is an indication that parties are fully aware of pending Court proceedings.

The suit (FHC/L/CS/1548/2021) was initiated by the Applicant in reaction to the letter of 18th October, 2021 purportedly written by the State Attorney-General directing Anthony Ohagwu to take over the leadership of ASPMDA and conduct elections within 45 days.

Also Read: Alleged N111.5billion Revenue Fraud Reports Indicts Zenith Bank

The suit is seeking among other reliefs an Order of Court declaring the letter of 18th October, 2021 ineffective, null and void.

The office of Attorney-General was duly represented in Court by one Adebayo Haroun and the Anthony Ohagwu and ASPMDA caretaker team were represented by one Chuks Nwalugha, Esq whilst the Association was represented by one Kehinde Yekeen, Esq.

On the 18th November, 2021 when the suit came up before the court, the Lagos State Counsel and the counsel to the Anthony Ohagwu informed the Court that they have an application challenging jurisdiction of Court and said applications were served on Applicant’s counsel in Court and by the relevant rules of Court he is are entitled to react to same within the period specified hence the application for an adjournment.

In a counter reaction, Counsel to ASPMDA, Kehinde Yekeen argued that It is absurd that despite the Order of Court, the Anthony Ohagwu has made it known to members of ASPAMDA that they have the backing of the State to disregard the Order of Court and conduct elections on the 25th of November, 2021.

“It is disturbing and very difficult to believe the claim by Anthony Ohagwu that Lagos State sanctioned their unprecedented flagrant disrespect to Order of Court.

Read Also: Court Orders Immigration To Release Dr Odili Passport

“The State Attorney-General who was well represented in Court by a senior staff of the ministry and a Minister in the Temple of Justice is expected to guide His Excellency on the need to see that the Order of Competent Court is giving effect to rather than giving a nod to an act of disobedience of court order by the alleged individuals.

“The action of the State Government cannot be excused on the basis of maintaining peace and order rather a position exhibiting Injustice and partiality within the multi billion naira plaza established by members of ASPMDA and most especially the action is a clearer picture of bringing the judiciary to odium” Kehinde argued.

Justice A. Lewis-Allagoa after oral application by the counsel to the applicant, ASPMDA, for parties to respect the integrity of court by adhering to the principle of LIS PENDE SI and arguments against such by the Counsel to Lagos State and Anthony Ohagwu, the Court granted an Order of Status quo ante Bellum pending the hearing of all applications challenging Court’sjurisdiction.

“This presupposes the fact that parties are asked to maintain their positions before the hostilities and not take further steps till 8th of December, 2021 when the suit was adjourned to” the judge said.

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