A Federal High Court on Monday granted leave to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to arraign the wife of a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) Cecilia Osipitan, for alleged N6 billion money laundering.
NAN reports that the EFCC is the complainant, while Osipitan and PJO Ventures Limited are 1st and 2nd defendants respectively in the nine-count charge.
Justice Inyang Ekwo adjourned the matter until March 26 after counsel to the EFCC, Benjamin Manji, admitted serving the defence counsel with the charge on Sunday, March 21,
Osipitan’s counsel, Tayo Oyetibo (SAN) had objected to the commencement of the matter when the prosecution lawyer told the court that the matter was for the defendant to take her plea.
“When did you serve the charge on the defendants,” Justice Ekwo asked Manji.
The EFCC lawyer admitted that though the defendant was served the previous day, it was because the defendant had refused to honour the commission’s invitation until she was arrested.
Counsel to the 2nd defendant, Bode Olanipekun (SAN) also opposed the commencement of the case.
Olanipekun recalled he was with the defendant at the EFCC Lagos office throughout Saturday and they flew to Abuja on Sunday.
The lawyer regretted that Osipitan was immediately detained by the agency’s operatives.
The judge held that the defence counsel had to be given ample opportunity to prepare for the arraignment.
Justice Ekwo made an order releasing Osipitan to her counsel and requested an undertaking to produce her on the adjourned date.
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