By BENJAMIN OMOIKE
A Federal High Court sitting in Ibadan has summoned an officer of the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCS), J.O. Oyaleke, over his failure to produce in court, Otuyalo Oluwadamilola, a defendant, who is being prosecuted by the Ibadan Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC).
Head, Media and Publicity of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission(EFCC), Wilson Uwajaren, made this known in a statement, explaining that, the suspect was arraigned in court for his involvement in cybercrimes to the tune of £45,000.
The summoned official, who is a Deputy Superintendent of the Correction (DSC), was served with the “summon” on February 25, 2022, to come and testify about the whereabouts of the defendant.
Further reports say that the official was attached to Justice Uche Agomoh’s Court and charged with the responsibility of producing any defendant remanded by the same court, but failed to produce the defendant on the 2nd of December, 2021, which had been slated for commencement of trial.
The Deputy Superintendent of the Correction (DSC), when asked by the court about the whereabouts of the defendant, said the defendant was amongst the 401 inmates who fled Abolongo Correctional Facility on October 22, 2021, during an attack by some bandits.
Also, reports revealed that Oyaleke further told the court that the Oyo State office of the Nigerian Correctional Service is working with relevant agencies to ensure the re-arrest of the fleeing defendant.
The defendant, it is recalled, was arraigned sometime last year on a five-count charge for internet fraud and he pleaded “not guilty” to the charges preferred against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
“That you, Otuyalo Oluwadamilola, between August 2017 to September 2017, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, took possession of the aggregate sum of N16, 638, 000.00 (Sixteen Million, Six Hundred and Thirty-eight Thousand Naira Only) paid into your account with Zenith Bank Plc-1005137906 under the disguise that the said sum was for a business transaction when you reasonably ought to have known that the said fund formed part of the proceeds of an unlawful activity, to wit: Internet Fraud, and hereby committed an offence contrary to Section 15 (2) (d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011, as amended and punishable under Section 15 (3) of the same Act”, one of the count reads.
Justice Agomoh, however, adjourned the matter till June 29, 2022, for mention.