Sahara Reporters

An Ikeja Special Offences Court in Lagos has adjourned till July 5 ruling on an application for bail brought by one-time Lagos socialite and businessman, Fred Ajudua.

Mr Ajudua is standing trial before Mojisola Dada, a judge, for allegedly defrauding a German, Zaid Abu Zalaf, over $1 million dollars in 1993.

On Wednesday, the prosecution highlighted how Mr Ajudua is a flight risk and should not be granted bail. It said the defendant is only using his health status to evade justice.

While responding to the prayer of the defence counsel, Norrison Quakers, for the granting of bail, the prosecution said Mr Ajudua’s request for bail is a calculated effort to also stall trial before the court.

“We have filed a 51 paragraph counter affidavit, a written address and we are adopting it as our submission. Attached to our counter affidavit are six exhibits. The defendant has demonstrated through these exhibits that he is a flight risk,” T.J Bayo, the prosecution counsel said.

“Establishing the antecedents of the defendant, especially before Justice Oyefeso, it has been proven that once the defendant is granted bail, he travels out of the country and writes ‘letters of adjournment’ calculated to stall trial.

“A LUTH document shows that he has been battling with the disease since 1995 and not 2003 and he didn’t contract it in prison and it shows he has been using health grounds to beat criminal justice.”

The prosecution said messages recovered from Mr Ajudua’s driver’s phone showed that he would be in Nigeria ”and claim to be in India”.

“A document dated 24 May was a response to our letter to confirm whether the defendant was in India from Ethiopia Airlines and it was clear the defendant had used his return ticket to Nigeria on 23 March and yet he wrote a letter to Justice Oyefeso that he was in India when he was in Nigeria.

“He wrote another letter stating he was admitted in the National Hospital, Abuja, but the response we got was that he was never at the National Hospital and he was never their patient.”

While introducing his bail application earlier, Mr Quakers had urged the court to adopt the judgement of the court of appeal as was done by Justice Oyefeso in a sister case which emphasised that a dead man cannot face trial.

Mr Quakers had also told the court that the main thrust of the application was based on Mr Ajudua’s grievous medical condition.

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