Court orders arrest of Imo Deputy Speaker over alleged N75m fraud
High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja, yesterday, issued a warrant of arrest on the Deputy Speaker of the Imo State House of Assembly, Amarachi Chyna Iwuanyanwu, over his alleged involvement in a N75 million fraud.
In his ruling, Justice Charles Agbaza, directed the Commander of the Intelligence Response Team (IRT), of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) headquarters, Abuja to execute the arrest warrant.
Justice Agbaza issued the warrant following Iwuanyanwu’s failure to appear in court to answer the four-count charge filed against him by the Inspector General of Police (IGP).
In the charge marked: CR/230/201, Iwuanyanwu and a firm, Sungold Estate Limited allegedly defrauded Wanogan Farm Limited of N75 million through dishonest and fraudulent claims in respect of a property-Heroes Place on Plot 145 Adetokunbo Ademola Crescent, Wuse 2, Abuja.
When the case was mentioned for hearing yesterday, Iwuanyanwu was absent in court, but, his counsel, Nabal Ominigbo, apologised for his absence.
The lawyer, who claimed that his client has some health challenges, was, however, unable to present any medical report to support his claim when the judge requested for it.
Angered by Ominigbo’s inability to support his claim with material evidence, Agbaza said the defendant was acting as if he was above the law having ben served hearing notices on three occasions and yet failed to attend court.
In his submission, prosecuting lawyer, Umoh Inah Inah, recalled that following Iwuanyanwu’s absence on the last date, the court issued a bench warrant against him, adding that Inspector Godwin Tanko of the IRT later arrested him at the Owerri Airport.
Inah explained that the intervention of security personnel attached to the Imo State Government House frustrated the defendant’s arrest and movement to Abuja for arraignment.
He, therefore, prayed the court for a fresh warrant of arrest to be directed at the Commander of the IRT, Abuja for easier execution.
Responding, Ominigbo said he was not opposed to the prosecution’s application for a fresh warrant of arrest, but prayed the court for one more opportunity to produce the defendant in court on the next adjourned date, failing which the arrest warrant could be activated.
Ruling, Justice Agabza rejected Ominigbo’s prayers, noting that Iwuanyanwu’s continued absence was disrespectful and that no court allows such impudence.