Thursday, November 24

Court declines EFCC’s request to keep Dasuki’s aide in prison

Court declines EFCC’s request to keep Dasuki’s aide in prison

Gabriel Kolawole, a federal high court judge, has declined the request of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to remand Nicholas Ashinze, a former aide of Sambo Dasuki, ex- national security adviser, and some security consultants who are facing charges of corruption in prison.

Ofem Uket, EFCC counsel, had asked the court not to admit the defendants to bail because they would escape justice by refusing to show up for trial.

Besides Ashinze, other defendants are Wolfgang Reinl, an Austrian security consultant; Sagir Mohammed, a retired military intelligence officer, and Edidiong Idiong, a legal practioner.

Uket told the court that though the EFCC granted the defendants administrative bail, it was terminated when the anti-graft agency filed charges against them.

“We are aware that the defendants are enjoying administrative bail. Their counsel understand that any administrative bail granted ends as soon as the matter is brought to court and bail applications are filed,” he said.

“Such bail cannot be extended since the charges have now been preferred to the defendants. We therefore urge the court to deny the bail application.”

In his ruling, Kolawole held that the claim of the EFCC counsel, stating that the defendants would escape justice was speculative because there was no evidence to show that.

The Judge said it was established that the EFCC granted the defendants administrative bail, and that there was no evidence that any of them jumped bail or tampered with witnesses or evidence.

Subsequently, Kolawole adopted the EFCC administrative bail and admitted all the defendants to bail with conditions.

He  adjourned the case to January 23, February 1 and 14, and March 7 and 21, 2017 for trial.

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