A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has ordered that the sum of N200 million allegedly fraudulently warehoused in some commercial banks by two military officers, and their three companies, be temporarily forfeited to the Federal Government of Nigeria, pending the outcome of investigations.
According to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the money was fraudulently withdrawn from the Defence Headquarters OverHead Expenses Accounts by the two officers.
The two military officers were identified as Adamu Bello Argungu and John Onimisi Ozigi, while their companies are Falsal & Co Global Services Nigeria Limited; Diamond Head Ventures & Development Company Limited; and Sweetex Bureau De Change Limited.
Justice Muslim Sule Hassan who presided over the court made the order for the temporary forfeiture after listening to the submissions of Mr. Nkereuwem Mark Anana, the EFCC lawyer, who moved an exparte application for the order.
The EFCC in an affidavit deposed by one of its operatives, Clever Ibrahim, submitted that the two military officers, Adamu Bello Argungu and John Onimisi Ozigi are of the Nigerian Army and Air Force respectively, who made several unauthorised withdrawals from the Defence Headquarters Overhead Expenses Account.
The deponent also stated that the money was deposited not in their salary accounts, nor the accounts belonging to the Defence headquarters, but in corporate accounts and other accounts belonging to their companies.
He also stated that though, a ‘post-no-debit’ has been placed on the accounts in accordance with the provisions of section 6(5) of the Money Laundering and Prohibition Act, 2011, which had lapsed after 72 hours, the order of the interim forfeiture of the money was sought to debar the respondents from tampering with it.