Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court, Abuja, has ordered the remand of two British nationals pending the determination of their bail applications.
The two men, James Richard Nolan and Adam Quinn (at large), were arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission over their alleged involvement in the $9.6bn judgment obtained by Process and Industrial Development against Nigeria.
A United Kingdom court had granted P&ID, an Irish engineering company, the said amount as damages for the non-execution of a 20-year gas and supply processing agreement the company had with the Nigerian Government.
Nolan and Quinn were arraigned on a 16-count charge bordering on money laundering on Monday.
Count one reads, “That you James Richard Nolan and Adam Quinn (at large), sometime in December 2013 in Abuja within the jurisdiction of this honourable court, being directors of Goidel Resources Limited, a Designated Non-Financial Institution(“DNFI”) aided the said company in failing to comply in the requirement of submitting to the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investments a declaration of the activities as specified under Section 5 (1)(a) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act, 2011 as amended and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 18(a) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act, 2011 as amended and punishable under Section 16 (2b) of the same Act.”
Another count reads, “That you Goidel Resources Limited, sometime in February 2014, at Abuja within the jurisdiction of this Federal High Court being a Designated Non-Financial Institution (“DNFI”) failed to report in writing to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission a single lodgment of the sum of $125,000 in your account number 0154696732 domiciled in Guaranty Trust Bank Plc as specified under Section 10(1b) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act, 2011 as amended and you thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 16(2b) of the same Act.”
The judge struck out count nine on the grounds that “a court of law has no jurisdiction to entertain a charge against a non-registered person”.
Thereafter, Bala Sanga, the prosecuting counsel, asked the court for a trial date and an order to remand the defendants in prison custody.
But Okwudili Anozie, defence counsel, opposed Sanga’s application and moved an oral application for bail of his clients.
Abang refused the oral application for the bail of the defendants and adjourned the matter till November 20 and November 21 for commencement of trial.