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Alleged Money Laundering: Justice Ajumogobia, Obla (SAN) Re-Arraigned

By Francis Iwuchukwu, Lagos 

A former judge of the Federal High Court, Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia, and a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Godwin Obla, were today (Wednesday) re-arraigned before Justice Rilwan Aikawa of a Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos State, Nigeria.

They were brought before the court by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over allegation of involvement in money laundering.

The former judge alongside the SAN were re-arraigned on an 18 counts charge of conspiracy, unlawful enrichment, retention of crime proceeds and money laundering.

But the duo pleaded not guilty to the charge slammed against them by the Commission.

However, consequent upon an application made by his lawyer, Ferdinand Orbih, SAN, Justice Aikawa granted Obla bail in the sum of N10million among other conditions.

Meanwhile, Justice Ofili-Ajumogobia is already on bail on similar terms having taken her plea to the same charge on April 18, 2019.

It would be recalled that the anti-graft agency had earlier arraigned the duo on a 30-count charge bordering on corruption before Justice Hakeem Oshodi of an Ikeja High Court, Lagos State, Nigeria.

While the trial lasted, the 30-count charge was later amended to 31 counts on February 23, 2018.

But Justice Oshodi struck out the charge against Justice Ofili-Ajumogobia and Obla (SAN) on the ground of lack of jurisdiction on April 16, 2019.

But the former judge was re-arrested by the operatives of the EFCC as she made to leave the Ikeja High Court premises.

The prosecution preferred the same charges against the defendants on April 18 before Justice Aikawa.

While Ofili-Ajumogobia took her plea, second defendant (Obla) was absent.

When Obla arrived the Federal High Court on Wednesday, he was re-arraigned alongside Ajumogobia.

But they both pleaded not guilty to the charge marked FHC/L/139C/19.

The matter has been adjourned till May 23, 2019.

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