Lovers arraigned again for alleged N17.5m charcoal fraud
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibadan zone, on Wednesday, re-arraigned one Alice John and her boyfriend, Fadi Alloush before Justice Bayo Taiwo at the Oyo State High Court Ibadan over fraud involving the sale of charcoal.
The lovers were re-arraigned on three count charges of stealing, conspiracy and obtaining the sum of N17.5 million under false pretences.
The offences were said to be contrary to Section 390 of the Criminal Code of Laws, Cap 38, Laws of Oyo State.
The defendants pleaded not guilty to the charges after which the prosecution counsel, Dr Ben Ubi, applied for a trial date while the defence counsel, Olukunle Kamisi, pleaded that the court allows the bail which was earlier granted the defendants to subsist.
Justice Taiwo later granted the defendants' prayers.
"The bail shall subsist and, in the event, where there is a delay on the defendants' part, their bail will be revoked", the judge said.
Justice Taiwo adjourned the hearing till October 8, 22020 for trial.
Initially, the defendants were arraigned before Justice Iyabo Yerima of the Oyo State High Court on March 17, 2020, but were re-arraigned on Wednesday following the reassignment of the case to Justice Taiwo.
It was reported that the between January and December 2019, the victim, Houssam Nasreddine allegedly transferred the sum of N17.5m to John's account for the purchase of charcoal from Iwerre Ile, Oyo State for exportation.
The defendant had bought the charcoals and loaded it in containers at the Hapag Lloyd Shipping Company, Apapa Lagos.
Instead of selling the goods in the name of the rightful owner, she had allegedly connived with her boyfriend, Alloush to change the ownership of the goods and sold them off.
The petitioner further added that the defendants frustrated all efforts to retrieve either the charcoal or his money.
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