An Ikeja Magistrates Court in Lagos, yesterday, ordered the remand of former aviation minister, Mr Femi Fani-Kayode, in the custody of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for three weeks.
Magistrate Bola Osunsanmi said: “The defendant is, hereby, remanded in EFCC custody for three weeks pending a proper arraignment in court.”
Justifying the order, Osunsanmi also said, “the applicants (EFCC) have never suppressed the date of the arrest of the defendant before this court.
“Also, no evidence of the suit of the defendant before the FCT High Court was tendered by his counsel before the court.”
EFCC took Fani-Kayode, director of media and publicity of former President Goodluck Jonathan’s 2015 presidential campaign to court, to seek a remand order against him over a two-count charge of obtaining money by false pretences and the alleged theft of N1.5 billion, property of the Federal Ministry of External Affairs.
EFFC told the court the remand order was urgently needed to prevent Fani-Kayode from tampering with evidence.
Earlier, during the proceedings, EFCC counsel, Mr N.M.Anana, urged the court to remand Fani-Kayode. “We have an ex parte application for an order of remand dated May 10, 2016 made pursuant to Section 261 (1) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Law.
But, Fani-Kayode’s counsel, Mr Wale Balogun opposed EFFC’s remand application because they suppressed some facts.
There is a pending suit before the FCT High Court to challenge the detention of the defendant. The suit number is FCT/HC/1767/2016 between the defendant and the EFCC who are aware of the suit and have been served.
Fani-Kayode was granted administrative bail, the conditions of which he met on May 12.
“In Abuja, they got another detention order for 14 days and what the EFCC did after was to bring him to Lagos,” he said.
Balogun urged the court not to detain Fani-Kayode because of the pending suit he had instituted against the EFCC.
“My client’s detention is a breach of the constitution; it is either he is granted bail or charged to court,’’ Balogun said.