A former Managing Director of the defunct Bank PHB, now Keystone Bank, Francis Atuche, has been sentenced to six years imprisonment for N25.7 billion fraud by an Ikeja High Court.
His co-defendant, Ugo Anyanwu, was also sentenced to four years imprisonment.
Justice Lateefat Okunnu said the convicts must make restitution as contained in Count 4, noting that the amount stolen was not up to what was alleged in the charge.
The judge discharged and acquitted Atuche’s wife of charges of conspiracy and stealing.
She held that the EFCC failed to link her to the crime, adding that suspicion no matter how strong can not take the place of fact.
In convicting the duo of Atuche and Anyanwu, the judge upheld the arguments of Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) Kemi Pinheiro, who prosecuted the case with the fiat of the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF).
Pinheiro had opposed Atuche’s contention that the stolen funds in dispute were loaned, not stolen.
The judge agreed with the prosecution and held that the money belonged to the bank and that it was capable of being stolen.
Justice Okunnu convicted Atuche and Anyanwu on counts 1 to 11, 14-20, 23, 24 and 27.
“The first and third defendants did not debunk the evidence of the prosecution that the loans were used to purchase shares.
“They rather contended that the monies granted as loan could be used for whatever purposes,” she said.
In a judgement that lasted over 11 hours, Justice Okunnu held that the EFCC successful proved its case against the convicts beyond a reasonable doubt.
The judge also held that the offences for which the convicts were charged can not be said to be mere professional negligence but criminal.
The court held that Atuche and Anyanwu abused their powers and ignored established rules and regulations, thereby putting the bank and depositors’ funds in danger.
The court held that the convicts corruptly took advantage of their positions to confer on themselves undue financial benefits without regard to the health of the bank.
The EFCC alleged that between November 2007 and April 2008, the convicts stole about N25.7bn belonging to the bank.
The defendants had pleaded not guilty.
Police man detained for allegedly killing 18-year-old female admission seeker
A police officer has allegedly killed an admission seeker, Monsurat Ojuade, in Lagos State.
The 18-year-old Ojuade was shot dead around the Ijeshatedo area of Lagos State around 11.35 pm on Friday.
Ojuade was said to have sat for the just-concluded Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination and scored 236.
The Lagos State Police Command’s Public Relations Officer, Adekunle Ajisebutu, in a statement, confirmed the death and arrest of the officer in question.
The statement read, “It has come to the knowledge of the Lagos State Police Command that one Monsurat Ojuade (female) aged 18, was hit by a stray bullet at about 0100hrs of 11th September, 2021 when a team of detectives from the State Criminal Investigation Department, Panti, went on investigation activities to effect arrest of a robbery suspect in Ijeshatedo area of the State.
“Concerted efforts were made to save the life of the injured victim. She was immediately taken to the hospital for urgent medical attention but later died on the way to the hospital.
“The Commissioner of Police, Hakeem Odumosu, regrets this unfortunate but avoidable incident and sincerely commiserates with the bereaved family in whose pain he shares in this moment of grief.
“This is, therefore, to inform the bereaved family, sympathizers and the general public that the erring Police officer who pulled the trigger has been identified and is currently being detained.
“The Commissioner of Police has directed that the said police officer should be tried and charged to court immediately after being dismissed from the Force.
“This, it is believed, will serve as deterrent to others who do not act professionally in the course of their duties.
“This singular sad incident notwithstanding, the Lagos State Police Command shall continue to strive vigorously and conscientiously to protect the lives of property of the citizens in the State.”
Bandits hit military base in Zamfara, kill 12 officers
Bandits hit a Nigerian military base in Mutumji, Dansadau, Zamfara, on Saturday morning.
The attackers also seized weapons from the killed service members and set ablaze other equipment.
The number of security forces manning the base was not immediately clear. The base has served as a crucial point operation for logistics and reconnaissance efforts to rout out bandits operating between eastern flank of Zamfara and western Katsina.
Woman has three babies for her two sons in Kwara
Am immigrant, Adamu Sime, has been arrested by the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, Kwara State Command, for allegedly having sex with his biological mother.
Adamu’s younger brother, who is also said to be having sexual relationship with the same mother, is wanted too.
The command’s spokesman, Mr. Babawale Afolabi, confirmed said that Adamu had been having sexual intercourse with his mother for a long time, which resulted in three offspring.
“On September 9, the District Head of Mosne Had Community, Kaima, Malam Bandede, reported the forbidden act being committed by Sime and his mother Fati Sime, of the same community.
“Men from the Intelligence Unit, NSCDC in Kaima, swung into action and the outcome of the investigations established the fact that the mother (Fati) had birthed three children for her biological son,” he stated.
Afolabi said that further investigation revealed that the younger brother of the accused, who was also confirmed to be sleeping with the mother, was now at large.
He said that the mother and her two sons did not have the necessary papers to stay in Nigeria and had been handed over to the Nigeria Immigration Service for background checks and further action.