Court orders final forfeiture of over N11billion properties linked to Emefiele

The Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has ordered the final forfeiture of properties valued at over N11,140,000,000.00 and N1.04 billion linked to the former Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Godwin Emefiele.

Penpushing reports that Justice Chukwujekwu Aneke gave the order of final forfeiture in response to a motion filed and argued by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), through its counsel, Chineye Okezie.

The anti-crime agency had alleged that the embattled former governor of the apex bank acquired the properties with proceeds of fraud, having earlier obtained an interim forfeiture order on June 5, 2024 as argued by its counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo (SAN).

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Penpushing further reports that the properties, listed in two schedules (A and B), include shops, apartments, lands, and apartments located in highbrow areas of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) argued that the properties were traced and reasonably suspected to have been acquired with proceeds of unlawful activities and equally alleged Emefiele of using proxies, including two current and one former Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) staff, to acquire the properties.

Penpushing also reports that the anti-graft agency disclosed that the staff members were identified as Obayemi Oluwaseun Teben, Akomolafe Adebayo, and Olubunmi Makinde (now a former staff member). adding that the properties were acquired through fraudulent means, including the use of proceeds from illegal foreign exchange transactions.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) alleged that the apex bank staff members used their positions and influence to secure retail and special allocation of foreign exchange to different companies in exchange for kickbacks.

Penpushing reports that the court’s order was made after no party appeared to contest the interim forfeiture order, while the properties will be forfeited to the Federal Government of Nigeria.

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