Nigerian government declares Briton wanted over money laundering

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has declared, a British citizen of Indian descent, Deepak Khilnani “wanted” after he failed to appear in court to answer charges of several counts of fraud and money laundering.

Penpushing reports that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in the suit number FHC/L/588/2022 filed in the Federal High Court, Ikoyi on October 18th 2022 charged Khilnani and a company in which he has interest with, for conspiracy to alter and file at Corporate Affairs Commission, Abuja fraudulent resolution on allotment of Shares.

The charges also included forgery of the signatures of (names withheld] contained on a Take Over Certificate with intent that it may be acted upon as Genuine, while on the run foreigner had been under investigation since 2017.

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Penpushing further reports that the 63-year-old businessman during the period tried different ways to avoid investigation and arraignment, while sources disclosed that at a time he jumped administrative bail, left for the United Kingdom and failed to honor the crimes commission invitations

The sources added that anti-corruption agency eventually placed the fugitive on their watchlist at all Nigerian Ports of entry, and when he returned in January 2018, an unsuspecting Khilnani was promptly detained at Lagos Murtala Mohammed Airport and handed over to the commission.

Penpushing also reports that an official source, confirmed that in May 2019, Khilnani deposited a British bank cheque for £4,620,000 at the agency Ikoyi Zonal office, while the cheque was payable to his former employers and was believed to be part refund of the money he allegedly stole.

The British bank was reported not to have not honour the cheque, and in December of the same year, shortly after the British cheque was dishonored, Khilnani’s lawyers took his same former employers and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to court in a civil suit number FHC/L/CS/2266/2019.

Penpushing reports that Khilnani and his lawyers sought an order of perpetual injunction restraining the 4th  Defendant (EFCC) from further mediation, or inviting the plaintiffs (Khilnani and Anor), or questioning the plaintiff, or instituting any charge against the plaintiffs.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), undeterred defended their lawful right to investigate crime and the case was eventually struck out in February 2022 due to the court’s lack of jurisdiction.

Penpushing further reports that it was therefore not until October 2022, after 5 years of investigation and legal tussle, that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) was finally able to charge Khilnani to court for financial crimes.

Meanwhile, report has it that as he (Khilnani) failed to answer the court summons and appear in court, the anti-graft in March 2023 obtained the court’s order and declared Khilnani wanted, which was published in a newspapers (namewithheld) of May 17th 2023 as well as on the website of the crimes commission.

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