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Saturday, July 13, 2024

Alleged N15.8m Oil Fraud: Lagos Court Adjourns Trial of Businessman Till June 19



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Justice Mojisola Dada of the Special Offences Court sitting in Ikeja, Lagos, on Thursday, June 13, 2024, adjourned till June 19, 2024 adoption of final written addresses in the alleged N15,800,000.00 (Fifteen Million, Eight Hundred Naira) fraud involving one Balami Abdullahi.

Abdullahi allegedly defrauded one Alhaji Buba Kimba of the said sum by falsely representing to him that he had 40,000 litres of Automotive Gas Oil to sell.

He, however, allegedly failed to deliver the product.

All efforts by the petitioner to recover the money from the defendant also allegedly proved abortive.

He was first arraigned by Lagos Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, on Friday, December 13, 2019 on a two-count charge bordering on obtaining by false pretence and stealing to the tune of N15,800,000.

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One of the counts reads: “That you, Balami Abdullahi, on or about the 24th day of December, 2018 in Lagos, within the Ikeja Judicial Division, with intent to defraud, knowingly obtained the aggregate sum of N15, 800, 000. 00 (Fifteen Million Eight Hundred Naira Only) from one Alhaji Buba Kimba under the false pretence that the said sum represented the cost for the sale of 40, 000 litres of Automotive Gas Oil, which you had and ready to sell and deliver to the said Alhaji Buba Kimba and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1(1) (a) and 1 (3) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act No. 14 of 2006.”

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He pleaded “not guilty” to the charges  when they were read to him.

The trial Judge had, on July 10, 2023, dismissed his no-case submission and ordered him to open his defence.

At Thursday’s sitting scheduled for the adoption of final written addresses, the defence led by K. Allu, moved the final written address of his client and prayed the court to discharge and acquit him.

However, the NBA seal on the final written address of the prosecution led by A. Damboa was wrongly signed, as the person who signed it was not on the list of the counsel prosecuting the case.

Consequently, the matter was further adjourned till June 19, 2024 for the adoption of final written addresses.

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