Sunday, 19 May 2013
EFCC Arraigns Ikuforiji’s Aide, Two Others, Over N1.5Bn Scam
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), today arraigned the trio of Oyebode Atoyebi, Personal Assistant to Adeyemi Ikuforiji, Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly; Olayinka Sanni, a former manager with Intercontinental Bank Plc (now Access Bank), and a company, Sidaw Ventures before Justice D.O Oluwayemi of a Lagos State High Court sitting in Igbosere on an eight count charge bordering on conspiracy, stealing and forgery amounting to about N1.5billion.
The accused persons pleaded not guilty to the charge.
Prosecution counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo urged the court to give a date for trial and that the accused persons be remanded in prison custody.
Defence counsel, O.S Showemimo, told the court that he had filed a bail application on behalf of his client, Olayinka Sanni. The offence for which Sanni is being held is bailable, he said, and he should be presumed innocent until he is found guilty.
Oyedepo, however, objected to the application. He placed a 16- paragraph counter-affidavit before the court stressing that Sanni is a serial offender who had three other cases in courts. He, therefore, urged the court to deny him bail.
Abiodun Onidare, who appeared for Atoyebi, also urged the court to grant Atoyebi bail on liberal terms. He told the court that he had reliable sureties who are willing and ready to stand for the defendant.
Oyedepo also objected to the prayers of Onidare saying that the proof of evidence he had on Atoyebi showed that it would be hazardous for the court to trust him with a bail offer.
Justice Oluwayemi, after listening to all the submissions adjourned the matter till February 7, 2013 for ruling on bail applications and ordered that the defendants be remanded in Ikoyi Prison.
Sanni, a chartered accountant and operator of Sidaw Ventures, a bureau de change, is alleged to have fraudulently transferred various sums of money from more than seven customers of the former Intercontinental Bank into the account of Sidaw Ventures owned and operated by him without the customers' consent.
Atoyebi was arrested for allowing his passport-sized photograph and name to be used by Sidaw Ventures Limited in opening an account in the name of Akanmu Babatunde. With this fictitious name, Sanni brokered many shady deals and duped many innocent people.