The boss of Innoson Motors, Chief Innocent Chukwuma, has described the warrant of arrest issued against him as “an abuse of court process taken too far.”
This was contained in a statement issued on his behalf by Cornel Osigwe,
Head of Corporate Communications,
“The issuance of bench warrant against me by the Federal High Court, Ikoyi, Lagos, today, June 24th 2019, is an abuse of process taken too far by the court and made without jurisdiction. The order itself is a nullity and does not have grounds on law.
“Firstly, there is no prima facie case against me. The charge was based on suspected or trumped-up action of Innoson Nigeria Ltd and Innoson Nigeria Ltd was a party originally to the charge but was discharged by the Court of Appeal.
Secondly, there was no notice of trial served on me pursuant to the Administration of Criminal Justice Act. The act provides that before the court should issue a bench warrant, there must be proof of service of the charge and the notice of trial on the person involved. But there is no notice of trial served on me and the question of whether I, Innocent Chukwuma, have been served with the charge is still pending at the Supreme Court. More importantly, the charge is also an abuse because of an earlier similar suit in relation to the charge pending at different Federal High Courts.
“Thirdly, the said Charge No: FHC/L/565/2015 which is a trumped-up was filed by the police in 2015 and was equally withdrawn by the same police through its notice of withdrawal dated 17th February, 2016 duly filed at the Federal High Court Registry, Lagos.
“GTB characteristically got the then Director of Public Prosecution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (names withheld) to claim to have taken over the charge/case using the name of the Attorney General of the Federation. This is after the police have withdrawn the case.
“Interestingly, DPP involvement in this matter and his complicities therein led to his removal as the Director of Public Prosecution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“The argument on whether the Office of the Attorney General is empowered to take over a case that the police have originally withdrawn is still going on at the Supreme Court.
“The public should be aware that this latest order is being orchestrated by … in order to force me to negotiate with the bank from a weaker position.
“Meanwhile, I have appealed against the Order of Bench Warrant to the Court of Appeal and have as well filled a Motion for Stay of Execution of the Order.”