By Innocent Anaba
Lagos—An Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, investigator, Tosin Owobo, yesterday, narrated to a judge of a Federal High Court sitting in Lagos how former Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshall Adesola Amosu, diverted huge sums of money from various accounts of Nigeria Air Force, NAF, to his private businesses.
Air Marshall Amosu alongside Vice Marshall Jacob Adigun, NAF’s former Director of Finance and Budget, and his deputy, Commander Olugbenga Gbadebo, with eight companies are being tried before the court over alleged N22.8 billion fraud by the EFCC.
Companies charged alongside the trio are: Delfina Oil and Gas Limited, Mcallan Oil And Gas Limited, Hebron Housing and Properties Company Limited, Trapezites BDC, Fonds and Pricey Limited, Timsegg Investment Limited and Solomon Health Care Services.
Owobo, a prosecution witness, who continued with his evidence-in-chief, narrated to the court, how about N860.03 million, meant for different Nigeria Air Force projects, were moved from NAF’ Jet A1 account domiciled with Zenith Bank Plc, to his companies’ accounts domiciled with United Bank for Africa, UBA and Ecobank Plc.
Trial judge in the matter is Justice Muhammad Idris.
Amosu’s companies where the monies were moved to according to the witness are; Hebron Housing and Property Limited, Solomon Healthcare Services Limited, and Solomon Enterprises Limited.
NAF’s accounts from where the funds were moved to Amosu’s firms’ accounts are: NAF Jet A1 account, NAF operation account, NAF Special Emergency Operation account, Ministry of Defence, MOD, and Headquarters NAF’s account.
Owobo told the court that the monies were moved to Amosu’s companies between March 5, 2014 and April 7, 2015.
Attempt to tender UBA’s account opening packages and mandate card with covering letters dated February 5, 2016, March 7, 2016, and April 18, 2016, belonging to Solomon Healthcare Services Limited and Solomon Enterprises Limited, by the prosecution was opposed by the defendant’s lawyers on the ground that some pages of the letters were missing.
Chief Bolaji Ayorinde, SAN, counsel to Amosu and one of his companies,, Solomon Healthcare Services Limited, urged the court to discountenance the letter dated February 5, 2016, and mark it as ‘tendered and rejected,’ as it was not included in the additional proof-of-evidence served on the defence by the prosecution.
Responding, EFCC lawyer, Mr. Oyedepo, urged the court not to mark the letters as ‘tendered and rejected,’ noting that the prosecution had checked the second additional proof-of-evidence filed on March 25, 2017, that the letters dated March 7, and April 18, 2016, and reflected in its form and content as front loaded to the defence.
Thereafter, Justice Idris, adjourned till today for ruling and continuation of defendants’ trial.
It will be recalled that the witness had told the court how the three Airforce Chiefs, used fictitious Oil and Gas companies to laundered the sum of N5.9 billion, received from Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA and Nigerian Air Force through the aides of some banks in Nigeria.
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