EFCC secures another forfeiture order against Emefiele’s “N11 billion property” in Abuja

CBN Suspended Governor, Godwin Emefiele Opts For Plea Bargain In Court Case

A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos on Wednesday ordered the interim forfeiture of another property allegedly linked to the embattled former Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) governor, Godwin Emefiele.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) legal team alleges that the property, worth N11,140,000,000, are located in highbrow parts of Abuja.

EFCC Claims

In its ex parte motion, EFCC counsel Rotimi Oyedepo (SAN) told Justice Chukwujekwu Aneke that the property in dispute was purchased by proxy with the proceeds of crime.

Oyedepo submitted that three CBN staff members, Obayemi Oluwaseun Teben, Akomolafe Adebayo, and Olubunmi Makinde, used their positions and influence to assist Emefiele in the alleged fraud.

The CBN staff were indicted for securing retail and special allocations of foreign exchange to different companies in exchange for kickbacks, Channels Television reports.

He urged the court to grant an interim forfeiture order against the properties in the interest of justice.

What the judge said After hearing from the legal team of the EFCC, the judge approved an interim forfeiture against the properties in dispute.

He also ordered the EFCC to publish details of the property in the newspaper so that an interested party can show why the interim forfeiture should not be made final.

The case was then adjourned to the 21st of June for the hearing of the motion for final forfeiture.

More Insights

Emefiele was suspended from office by President Bola Tinubu, paving the way for an investigation into his tenure as CBN governor and subsequent prosecution.

The suspended governor had also filed a fundamental human rights suit against his prolonged detention before Justice O. Adeniyi, and the application was granted.

Emefiele was arraigned on a two-count charge of illegal possession of firearms and ammunition before Justice Nicholas Oweibo on July 25, 2023. The matter was eventually withdrawn by the Attorney General of the Federation and struck out by the court.

On November 17, 2023, the EFCC arraigned the former CBN governor before Justice Muazu on a six-count charge of procurement fraud.

Emefiele pleaded “not guilty” to the charge. The EFCC later amended the charges before Justice Muazu and re-arraigned Emefiele.

On April 4, 2024, the EFCC arraigned Emefiele before Justice Rahman Oshodi of the Lagos High Court over abuse of office bordering on alleged irregular allocation of billions of US dollars in foreign exchange.

The suspended CBN governor pleaded not guilty, and the case is yet to be concluded.

Justice Yellim Bogoro of another court division had ordered an interim forfeiture of the sums of $4,719,054, N830,875,611, and several multi-million-naira properties linked to Emefiele, following an application by the EFCC.

Last week, another court-ordered interim against $1.4 million allegedly linked to the former governor was said to be domiciled in Titan Bank

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