Court convicts Metuh, firm over N400m fraud trial
The Federal High Court in Abuja, on Tuesday, convicted a former National Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, Olisah Metuh, and his firm, Destra Investments Limited, of the first of the seven counts instituted against them by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
Ruling on the first count in his judgment, Justice Okon Abang ruled that a former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki, unlawfully transferred the sum of N400 million to the defendants in November 2014.
The judge ruled that Metuh and his firm reasonably ought to have known that the sum of N400 million paid to them formed part of the proceeds of the unlawful activity of the ex-NSA because they had no form of a contractual relationship with the ONSA.
According to the judge, Dasuki transferred the money to the defendants “in breach of public trust”.
He dismissed the contention of the defence who argued that the defendants could not be convicted for the money laundering offence because Dasuki, who is currently being prosecuted, had yet to be convicted for the predicate offence of breach of trust and corruption.
The judge said, contrary to the argument, “the predicate offence and the money laundering offence are intertwined”.
“The success or failure of the predicate offence does not determine the success or failures of the money laundering offence,” the judge added.
The PUNCH reports that after finding the defendants guilty of the first count, the judge is analysing the evidence tendered in respect of the second count.