EFCC arraigns businessman for alleged issuance of false document
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), yesterday, arraigned a businessman, Bernard Okechukwu Nzenwa, alongside his company, Omega Maritime and Energy Limited ,before a Special Offences Court, Ikeja, Lagos. Nzenwa was arraigned before Justice Rahmon Oshodi on a count charge bordering on issuance of false documents.
The anti-graft agency alleged that Nzenwa, alongside Omega Maritime and Energy Limited and Dr. Oluchi Nzenwa (Now at Large), issued false documents purported to have emanated from Guaranty Trust Bank Plc (GTB).
The EFCC counsel, Mr. G.C Akaogu told the court that the defendants, sometime, on March 9, 2011, issued a false document titled: “Bond for the re-exportation of imported goods” delivered without payment of import duty, which they purported to have emanated from Guaranty Trust Bank Plc.
Their offences were contrary to Section 360(1)(b) and punishable under section 364(1) of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2011. The defendant, Nzenwa, who also answered for the company, pleaded not guilty to the charge.
Following his plea, the prosecuting counsel, Akaogu, prayed the court to remand the suspect in the Correctional facility pending the determination of the suit.
However, the defendant’s counsel, Mr. Clinton Eaezie, in his oral application ,prayed the court to grant his client bail. He told the court that the defendant was granted administrative bail at the EFCC’s office,and thus, was not a flight risk.
Responding, the court declined granting bail to the defendant on the basis of an oral application.
Justice Oshodi, in his ruling, held that the defendant’s counsel could not furnish the court with the terms and conditions in which the defendant was granted bail while in EFCC’s custody. And he did not file a bail application for the defendant.
“This is a court of record. I am not inclined to take the defendant’s oral bail application. The defendant’s counsel was unable to furnish the court with the details of the terms of the administrative bail. I cannot grant him interim condition. The defendant is hereby remanded in EFCC custody,” he ruled.
The court directed the defendant’s counsel to file his client’s bail application before the next adjourned date and subsequently fixed February 17, 2023, for trial.