• Friday, May 24, 2024
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Former Navy chief, two others face arrest over N1.5bn money laundering charges

I can’t sit on appeal decided by other court, says Ondo judge

The Federal High Court in Abuja has issued a bench warrant for the arrest of Usman Jibrin, a former Chief of Naval Staff, along with two other officers.

This was in response to N1.5 billion money laundering charges filed against them by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC).

The warrant, approved by Inyang Ekwo (Justice) in a motion exparte marked FHC/ABJ/CR/158/2023 and filed by Osuobeni Ekoi Akponimisingha, ICPC counsel, underscored the gravity of the allegations.

The motion outlines that the defendants, including Usman Jibrin Oyibe, Adam Imam Yusuf, and Ishaya Gangum Bauka, are accused of money laundering and making false statements regarding the diversion of funds in their respective military and paramilitary institutions into companies they allegedly had a stake in.

Despite being released on administrative bail on self-recognizance due to their status as serving and former public figures, the defendants have failed to appear for possible arraignment in court, as stated by the lawyer representing ICPC.

The court, upon consideration of the motion, granted an order of substituted service of the charge on the defendants through their counsel.

However, the defendants have still not appeared for arraignment, prompting the court to authorize the issuance of a bench warrant for their arrest.

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Listed in the 17-count charge are Usman Jibrin Oyibe, Adam Imam Yusuf, Ishaya Gangum Bauka, as well as several companies allegedly involved in the illicit activities.

During the court proceedings, Akponimisingha, ICPC counsel, urged the judge to grant the motion to ensure the commencement and conclusion of the case, which Ekwo duly ordered.

The judge adjourned the case to June 3 for report, emphasizing that if the defendants are apprehended before the adjourned date, ICPC should inform the court immediately.

This latest legal action marks another chapter in the legal troubles of Vice Admiral Usman Jibrin, who was previously sued by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in 2023 for alleged involvement in a N600 million fraud case related to the purchase of a house worth multi-millions.