Ogun Governor’s Aide, Abidemi Rufai Bail Halt Pending Appeal

A Federal judge in New York city has granted the suspended aide of Ogun State Governor Dapo Abiodun, Abidemi Rufai, $300,000 bail bond pending his trial for unemployment fraud.

However, a Federal Magistrate Judge Ramon Reyes delayed his release to let federal prosecutors appeal the bail verdict.

He was initially denied bail after his brother, a New York attorney, declined to post a $300,000 surety bond.

Rufai, was arrested on May 14 as he tried to travel from New York to Nigeria.

He is accused of using stolen identities to take more than $350,000 in jobless benefits from the Washington State Employment Security Department last year.

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Prosecutors had argued that Rufai was an extreme flight risk, but Reyes ruled that a New York state resident and family friend of Rufai could post the bond and serve as Rufai´s custodian until his trial in Tacoma.

Nekpen Soyemi, a registered nurse whose family comes from the same region of Nigeria as Rufai, told Reyes she would guarantee a $300,000 bond and allow Rufai to stay at her home pending trial.

Rufai also would be restricted in travel in New York City and Western Washington and would be monitored with electronic surveillance.

On Thursday, federal prosecutors in Seattle sent a letter to Reyes raising questions, including one about money allegedly deposited into a bank account in Soyemi´s name.

Soyemi told the judge that her father had opened the account for her when she was in college. Soyemi said she had no knowledge of the transaction referred to by prosecutors.

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Reyes delayed Rufai´s release until Tuesday. He also noted that Rufai would need to address an immigration detainer issued against him Sunday by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

Under that detainer, Rufai could be picked up by Immigration and Customs enforcement officers after his release and potentially held for deportation.

Michael Barrows, Rufai´s attorney, said the conditions of his bail “were appropriate to secure his future attendance in court.”

Federal prosecutors said they were preparing their appeal.

Source: London Daily Mail.


Wahab Akinlade

Akinlade I. WAHAB is a dedicated journalist and the proprietor of I-WAHAB Media. He embarked on his career at Murhi International TV (MiTV) and subsequently joined Radio Nigeria as a Judicial Correspondent.With a profound interest in legal reporting, he currently holds the positions of Chairman at the National Association of Judicial Correspondents (NAJUC), Ikeja Branch, and Chairman at the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Radio Nigeria Chapel.As the owner of I-WAHAB Media, he has successfully established Top Court News, a platform renowned for providing comprehensive coverage of court cases and legal developments, with the aim of promoting transparency within the judicial system.Akinlade's diligent work and unwavering commitment to ethical reporting have earned him immense respect within the Nigerian journalism community.

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