Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Makurdi zonal office, on Tuesday arraigned former Vice Chancellor of Federal Univeristy of Agriculture, Makurdi (FUAM), Emmanuel Kucha.
Kucha was arraigned before Justice Mobolaji Olajuwon at Federal High Court Makurdi, Benue State on a four – count charge of conspiracy, misappropriation of public funds, abuse of office and gratification.
The former vice Chancellor, being a public officer of the Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi, Benue State was alleged to have been involved with obtaining money as bribe in the course of performing is official duties.
One of the charge reads:
“That you Emmanuel Kucha whilst serving as the Vice Chancellor of Federal University of Agriculture, between 2012 and 2017 in Makurdi within the jurisdiction of this honourable Court did accept the total sum of N70,327,197 (Seventy Million, Three Hundred and Twenty Seven Thousand, One Hundred and Ninety Seven Naira) through several payments into your Guaranty Trust Bank Account No: 0124395144 as a bride for performing your official act and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 18(c) of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000 and punishable under section 18(d) of the same Act”.
He pleaded ‘not guilty’ when the charges were read to him even as prosecution counsel, Y. Y. Tarfa confirmed to Court that he received the bail application of the defendant and prayed for a date to open his case,
On his part, defence counsel, Timothy Dim, moved his bail application and urged the Court to grant his client bail on liberal terms, and to remand the defendant in EFCC custody pending the perfection of his bail condition which the Court granted.
Justice Olajuwon granted bail to the defendant in the sum of N10 Million Naira with one surety in like sum.
He added that the surety must be public servant with the federal or Benue State government on grade level 17 and must submit two recent passport photographs. Address of the surety must be verified, and Court must confirm the authenticity of the letter and documents the surety presents to Court.
The suspect was remanded in EFCC custody pending the perfection of his bail condition while the case was adjourned to January 5, 2020 for commencement of trial.
In another development, the Makurdi Zonal Office of the EFCC on Tuesday secured the conviction of a 22 year old Damilola Adeyemo, whose case was before Justice Mobolaji Olajuwon at the Federal High Court sitting in Makurdi, Benue State.
Based on a plea bargain agreement with the Commission, Damilola Adeyemo was arraigned on a two – count charge for dishonestly making use of the identity of another man and fraudulently obtaining the sum of N230,000 only which part of the proceed was used in the acquisition of an iPhone 7.
One of the charges read thus:
“That you, Damilola Adeyemo on or about 6th of September, 2019 in Lagos, within the jurisdiction of this honourable Court without lawful authority engaged in acquisition of an iPhone 7 with IMEI 359465081928295 knowing that the said iPhone 7 was proceed of criminal activity and thereby committed an offence, contrary to Section 18(1) of the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (Establishment) Act, 2004 and punishable under section 18(2) of the same Act”.
Adeyemo pleaded “guilty” to the charge and in view of his plea, prosecuting counsel, Y. Y. Tarfa, urged the Court to accept the plea bargain agreement and convict him accordingly.
Justice Olajuwon pronounced him guilty and subsequently convicted him and sentenced him to two years imprisonment with an option of fine of N50,000 (Fifty Thousand Naira).
He was also to pay the sum of N230,000.00 which he had refunded during the course of investigation back to the complainant as restitution.
The Convict shall forfeit the said iPhone 7 to the Federal Government of Nigeria.
Daily Sun gathered that trouble started for Damilola Adeyemo when he was arrested by operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on the 4th November, 2019 in Lagos in relation to a case of dishonestly making use of the identity of another and fraudulently obtaining money. The convict was using several accounts to defraud people.