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10 Arraigned for Trespass

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By Abdulgafar Oladimeji.

The police have arraigned 10 persons before a Chief Magistrate’s Court over alleged trespass on a disputed piece of land located on the famous Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida (IBB) Way in Kano metropolis.

One Idris Mana, Zakari Hassan and eight others were charged before the court to respond to a two count allegations of criminal conspiracy and trespass.

The prosecutor,  A M. Abdullahi told the court that the accused persons trespassed on  the disputed land, with C of O number CON/98/120,  by storing tiles, woods and tires within the premises, disclosing that the land belongs to one Uba Saleh, a resident of Farm Centre quarters, Kano.

He disclosed further that Uba Saleh pleaded with the defendants to vacate the land, and on their refusal to heed his plea, Uba through a legal practitioner, Barrister Umar Suleiman,  reported  the matter to the  police.

The prosecution alleged that prior to the intervention of the police the defendants had serially launched verbal assaults on the complainant.

The defendants pleaded not guilty to the allegations levied against them before the court, and the matter was adjourned to 16th December for continuation of hearing.

MONEY LAUNDERING: Mompha Docked on N33Billions Allegation

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Monday, November 25, 2019 arraigned Ismaila Mustapha aka Mompha, with his company, Ismalob Global Investments Limited before Justice Muhammad Liman of the Federal High Court, Ikoyi, Lagos on a 14-count charge bordering on cyber fraud and money laundering to the tune of N33 billion (Thirty-three billion naira).

He was alleged to be a major figure in an organised transnational cyber fraud network, where he was said to have used Ismalob Investment Limited to launder the funds.

The defendant pleaded not guilty to all the charges.

One of the charges contained an allegation that Ismaila Mustapha had, between 2015 and 2018,  procured Ismalob Investment Limited to retain the aggregate sum of N18,059,353,413 (Eighteen Billion, Fifty-Nine Million, Three Hundred and Fifty Three Thousand, Four Hundred and Thirteen Naira) in its account No. 5260000846 domiciled in a new generation bank.

Another charge alleged that between 2015 and 2017 he used Ismalob Global Investment Limited to retain in the same account, the aggregate sum of N14,946,773,393.00 (Fourteen Billion, Nine Hundred and Forty-Six Million, Seven Hundred and Seventy Three Thousand, Three Hundred and Ninety Three Naira) received from Pitacalize Ltd.

The retention of the monies which are reasonably suspected to be proceeds of unlawful act, is contrary to Sections 18(c) and 15(2)(d) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act, 2011 (as amended) and punishable under Section 15(3) of the same Act.

After he has his plea, prosecuting counsel, S.I. Suleman asked the court for a trial date and an order to remand the defendant in a Correctional Centre, pending the determination of the case.

But, defence counsel, Gboyega Oyewole, SAN, informed the court that an application for bail has been filed and served on the prosecution, which the prosecution counsel confirmed, even though he asked for time to review the application and respond.

Justice Liman, after listening to both parties adjourned the case till November 29, 2019 for hearing of bail application and commencement of trial, and ordered that the defendant be remanded in the Nigerian Correctional Service custody.

In a related development, the arraignments of Mompha’s associates, Kolade Phillip and Hamza Koudeih, have been shifted to November 28 as 2nd defendant’s counsel, Abdulhamid Mohammed told the court that he was only informed of the arraignment earlier in the day and doesn’t have a copy of the charge. He pleaded with the court for a short adjournment to enable him study the charge and prepare his client before the plea is taken.

opposed the application, arguing that the plea relevant to jurisdiction of court was not that of the counsel.

Disregarding the opposition of prosecution counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, Justice Hassan adjourned the matter until Thursday November 28 for arraignment.

SOWORE: DSS DG Faces Jail Term for Court Contempt

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A Form 48 issued by the Federal High Court in Abuja late yesterday and served on the Department of State Security (DSS) contained a stern warning that the DSS and its Director-General would face the wrath of the law if they continue to detain the convener of RevolutionNow, Omoyele Sowore and his associate, Olawale Bakare (Mandate).

The court was obviously unimpressed with the way the DSS has so far refused to release the defendants after the court has granted them bail and they have fulfilled the bail conditions.

The court process issued on DSS reads: “Take notice that unless you obey the direction contained in the order of the Federal High Court of Justice, Abuja made on the 6th November, 2019, which ordered you to release the defendants/Applicants in suit no: FHC/ABJ/CR/235/2019 forthwith, you will be guilty of contempt of court and will be liable to be committed to prison.

The court even referred to an earlier order served on the DSS which the organization had also refused to comply with. “A copy of the said order of court earlier served on you is hereby annexed for your on-the spot reference.

“This court has been informed that even as at today, Tuesday the 12th November, 2019 you are yet to comply with the lawful order of the Federal High Court by refusing to release the defendants/applicants namely: Omoyele Stephen Sowore and Olawale Adebayo Bakare (Mandate) in your custody.

“You are hereby directed to comply with the court order forthwith or you will be guilty of contempt of court.”

Even though the court process was received at the DSS headquarters by one Tina James, judicialsketch.com is reports that the DSS is yet to comply with the instruction it contains as we publish.

Pakistani Bizman Docked for Fraud

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By Abdulgafar Oladimeji

A 32 year-old Pakistani national, Mohammed Rizuan has been docked before a Kano Chief Magistrate’s Court No 10 sitting at No-man’s-land for allegedly defrauding his Nigerian counterpart.

The police in its deposition said the defendant defrauded his victim   of the sum of N6million.

Police prosecutor, Inspector Umar Mukthar stated that the accused person conspired with one Abdulgafar Nadi to execute the fraud.

 The duo obtained textile materials valued at N6 million from Ibrahim Muazam, the court heard.

The police further alleged that the defendants sold off the textile materials and absconded from Kano to their home country, Pakistan.

Inspector Mukthar vehemently objected to the release of the defendant on bail, though he admitted that bail is at the discretion of the court.

 The prosecution alleged that the accused person had severally declined to honour police invitations, stating that security operatives had to track the defendants to Lagos, from where he arrested and brought them to Kano to face prosecution.

The accused persons denied the allegation levied against him.

 Counsel to the defendants, Barrister Abdullahi Musa Karaye prayed the court to admit them on bail.

The defense counsel submitted that the continuous detention of the defendants would send wrong signals to prospective foreign investors,  at a time Nigeria is yelling for foreign investors.

In her ruling, the presiding Chief Magistrate, Hajiya Mariam Sabo ordered that the defendants be released on bail in the sum of N2million.The amount should be deposited in cash   with the court registry, the judge directed.

The court further ordered the Pakistani businessman to produce two reliable sureties in like sum of N2million each, one of the surety must be a company director.

20 YEAR-OLD MAN FACE DEATH SENTENCE

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A 20 years-old man, Hamisu Alhassan has been arraigned before a Kano Chief Magistrate’s Court for allegedly killing his neighbor. The defendant, if convicted, will get death sentence, Judicialsketch.com can reveal.

Police First Information Report (FIR) stated that on October 15th, 2019,  Hamisu a resident of Gabasawa local government area in Kano state, northwestern Nigeria, conspired with one Safiyanu Alhassan (now at large).

According to police report, the duo armed themselves with an AK 47 rifle, cutlass and club and attacked one Ismail Mohammed, who they shot the chest.

The police stated that Ismail gave up the ghost as “doctors on call at a government hospital declared him dead on arrival.”

Police prosecutor, Inspector Umar Mukthar alleged before the court that the defendants committed the offence of culpable homicide which contravenes the provisions of section 221 of the penal code law and is punishable by death.

He noted that the defendants were arraigned before the court on three counts charge bordering on allegations of criminal conspiracy, armed robbery and culpable homicide, contrary to section 97 and 221 of the penal code laws.

The defendants denied the allegations filed against them and urged the court to admit them into bail terms.

The court ruled that Hamisu was before the court on remand proceedings, noting that the court lacks jurisdiction to preside over the matter. The judge ordered that the accused person   should be remanded in custody.

The case was adjourned to January 21, 2020 for mention.

BREAKING NEWS: Kano New Police Boss Vows to Kill Crimes

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The new Police Commissioner in Kano State, Habu Ahmadu Sani, has pledged to improve security situation in the state.

Speaking, Monday, to his principal officers as well as to the members of the press, Sani admitted that he has been duly briefed by his Head of Departments and Divisional Police Officers about the security situation in the state, adding that he was determined to improve on the achievements of his predecessor.

Sani, who assumed office as the 41st Commissioner of Police in the state, declared that, “An action plan has been designed and would be implemented in the fight against all forms of crimes and criminality in the state.

“I have directed all the Heads of Departments, Divisional Police Officers, tactical commanders, other supervisory officers and personnel to work professionally in accordance with the provisions of the Police Act and Regulations and the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in respect for human rights and the rule of law,” he stated.

In the exercise of his mandate, he indicated that community policing and problem-solving approach would be adopted in policing the state, adding that, “We shall integrate the key elements of modern-time control and conflict-management in our policing efforts.

“These may include, but not limited to prolific offender management, crime hot spot policing and intelligence led and predictive policing” he added.

“The Public Relations Unit of the Command would be strengthened to achieve its mandate and meet the demands of the people of Kano State, he stated adding that,“ A social media section would be established to monitor, engage and promote policing activities in the state”.

‘Programmes and workshops would be organized for interactive engagements between the police and social media activists to enhance the capacity of the Police Public Relations office personnel for prompt response”

He also pledged to improve the channels of forwarding complaints against serving police officers in the state as parts of efforts to make the police accountable to the good people of Kano State.

He promised to launch a campaign against Daba and other social vices, adding that these campaigns would be taken to schools, market places, workshops and other media platforms with a view to promoting a consensus against the menace of Daba, drug abuse and other social vices in the state.

Adoke Faults his Arrest by Dubai Authorities *Seeks AGF’s Intervention

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Nigeria’s former Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mohammed Bello Adoke, has faulted his recent arrest by the International Police Organisation (Interpol), and has sought his immediate release from the custody. He also wants to block his extradition from the UAE to face charges in Nigeria.  

Adoke has insisted that his recent arrest in Dubai was based on a non-existing warrant, arguing that the warrant that the warrant upon which the Interpol acted had already been vacated by the High Court that issued it in the first place in Nigeria.

Adoke’s arrest was effected by the Interpol in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates, on November 11 over charges bothering on $1.1 billion Malabu Oil scam instituted against him and others by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in 2017.

Judicialsketch.com learnt that Adoke’s lawyers sent a letter to the Interpol headquarters in Lyon, France, to explain that his arrest was based on a warrant of arrest already quashed by the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, which earlier issued it.

The letter reads in part that “Our client is the 9th defendant in charge number FCT/ HC/CR/124/2017 between the Federal Government of Nigeria V Shell Nigeria Exploration Production Company Ltd & 10 others .

“ We write on behalf of our client to bring to the notice of your honourable office , the enrolled order of the court dated October 25, 2019, Justice D.Z. Senchi vacating the earlier bench warrant issued against our client .We respectfully bring to your notice the above judgment of the court to which there is neither any appeal nor a reversal for your necessary information and action .”

Meanwhile, another letter was sent to the AGF’s office on the 14th day of November seeking for the AGF’s attestation to the judgment of the FCT High Court which set aside the earlier warrant of arrest issued against him. The attestation was obviously needed so that the order would be eligible to be sent to the Dubai authorities .

The letter reads in part that “We respectfully apply to your honourable office to attest to the said enrolled order.”

The part of the court order which Adoke lawyers are interested in reads in part  that “The arrest warrant issued for the arrest of the 4th – 9th defendants in charge number FCT/ HC/CR/ 124 /2017 and to be executed by the police and the INTERPOL is declared null and void and of no effect whatsoever…Accordingly, the order of April 17, 2019 issuing a bench warrant on the 4th – 9th defendants is hereby set aside and vacated…It is further ordered that the case be adjourned sine die until the prosecution takes the required procedural steps to effect service on the defendants .”

Adoke is facing criminal charges bordering on alleged abuse of office and money laundering to the tune of $1.1 bn brought against him and four others by the EFCC with respect to the granting of the Oil Prospecting License 245 to Shell and ENI .

Nigeria Forced to Pay $200m Deposit to British Court in P&ID 2$9.6bn Failed Appeal

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The Nigerian government has agreed to pay $200m as security deposit in the ongoing gas dispute between Nigeria and Process and Industry Development Limited (P&ID).

This is in compliance with the orders given by Justice Christopher Butcher of the Commercial Court in London in September which asked Nigeria to pay the said amount while granting Nigeria’s request to stay execution in the award of $9.6bn award in favour of  P&ID.

Judicialsketch.com gathered that Nigaria’s legal team pledged during a hearing at the London court on Friday that the country would pay the $200m security deposit. The legal team was said to have hinted that President Muhammadu Buhari has authorised that Nigeria provides a bank guarantee for the said amount.

Judicialsketch.com also gathered that the ministry of finance has received approval to proceed with obtaining the bank guarantee, while the finance minister has submitted a request to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to proceed with procuring the bank guarantee.

Already, CBN has submitted a request to a foreign correspondent bank to issue the bank guarantee from London and provide the relevant information to the court, Judicialsketch.com, was told.

Nigeria had filed an appeal before the London court to stop an earlier order of September 2019 to pay the $200m security deposit and the $9.6bn tribunal award in favour of P&ID, and this recent development creates the impression that the appeal may have failed.

P&ID had been quoted to have said that “The eleventh-hour gambit by Nigeria’s Attorney General Abubakar Malami to avoid paying the $200m in security to the English Court on November 25 has failed”, adding that “This is a major milestone and P&ID welcomes the outcome of today’s hearing in London. P&ID expresses hope that the Buhari administration will now accept the reality of the Arbitration Tribunal Award and the decision of the English Court – and end the ridiculous sham investigation and show trials conducted by the EFCC (Economic Financial Crimes Commission) in recent months”.

PI&D was also quoted to have berated Nigeria’s Attorney General, saying  “AGF Malami presented a witness statement that is neither credible nor believable and it impugns both the English court and the Arbitration proceedings chaired by Lord Leonard Hoffman. The ‘evidence’ cited by Malami and others is based purely and exclusively on a government-sanctioned campaign of harassment, intimidation and illegal detention of a number of individuals associated with P&ID or the GSPA contract. AG Malami’s campaign has been nothing more than a blatant perversion of justice and the rule of law.”

The Nigerian government is yet to issue any official reaction.

Kano Government may Still Recognise Emirs despite Court Ruling, Says Academic *This is illegal, Contemptuous, Says CSO

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There is nothing wrong in Kano state government saying it would continue to recognize the four emirates and their emirs which a High Court in the state pronounced to be created in violation of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

A law teacher at the Faculty of Law, Bayero University, Kano, Mr. M. L. Garba who expressed this opinion to Judicialsketch.com explained one may not fault the stance of the state government’s stance “if the state government has appealed the against the judgement of the state high court, and there is an injunction pending appeal’.

According to him, “in the absence of the above, whatever government does officially with those emirs will be illegal, and any financial relationship between the government and the emirs could be investigated. Furthermore, those emirs can be cited for impersonation.

“But I am not sure contempt of court would apply here since there is no direct order dethroning or asking them to vacate their seats. We can only consider their continuous sittings as ‘emirs’ as illegal”, the law lecturer said.  

Meanwhile, a civil society group called the Renaissance Coalition for the Restoration of Kano and the Kano Emirate has berated Kano state commissioner for information, Comrade Mohammed Garba who signed a press statement that said that the state government despite the court judgement, will continue to recognize the monarchs of the four emirates of Bichi, Gaya, Karaye and Rano as first class emirs and will continue to relate with them as such.

The group said Mohammed’s statement “is contemptuous, criminal, illegal and of course illegitimate…Such has never been seen in a civilized and modern world. That a  government will publicly declare its intention to disobey a constituted Court order, with such impunity and total disregard to The constitution and The Rule of Law! This without a doubt negates the principle of the supremacy of the law and is unacceptable!”

It called the state government and its agents ‘bandits’ since they do not believe in the Rule of Law, adding that “Their belligerent disregard of the Judgement shows that they do not understand the implication of their public declaration of disobedience to The Law, but they must be made to understand Rule of Law cannot be relegated to the background to water their selfish egos. That the rule of law predates liberal democracy and it is the very essence of the survival of any civilization.

Justice Usman Na’abba of Kano state high court had declared in a judgement read last Thursday that Kano State House of Assembly has violated the provisions of section 101 of the Federal Republic of Nigeria while passing the law that created the four emirates and their first class emirs.

Kano state Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice. Mr Ibrahim Mukhtar has not responded to questions about his position regarding the stance of the government of the state.      

Senate to Hear from Nigerians on Social Media Bill Next Week *NBA, NGE, Others Kick

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The Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters of the Nigerian Senate on Friday said it was ready to fix a date for a public hearing on the 2019 in the coming week.

Judicialsketch.com recalls that only five days ago (Tuesday) the bill passed second reading on the floor of the Senate, even though the umbrella body of lawyers in Nigeria, the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), the Nigerian Guild of Editors (NGE), individual human rights lawyers, and other pressure and political groups on have continued to signal their opposition to the bill, vowing to participate in the public hearing in order to voice their opposition.

The anti-social media bill seeks to make provisions to protect citizens from internet falsehood and manipulations and other related matters, and was being sponsored by the Senator representing Niger East District, Sani Musa. His motion appeared to have the tacid support of his colleagues in the senate, as only a handful of them spoke against it. Majority of the lawmakers in the chamber voted in support of the bill and it was read the second time.

The senate president then referred the bill to the judiciary and human rights panel for further legislative action.

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