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Dokpesi remanded in EFCC custody
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Dokpesi remanded in EFCC custody

Mfonobong Akpan

A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, yesterday ordered the remand of the former Chairman of Daar Communications Plc, Chief Raymond Aleogho Dokpesi in the custody of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) after he was docked on a six-count charge of money laundering involving N2.1 billion.

Dokpesi pleaded not guilty to the charge which also involved a breach of public trust and procurement fraud.

He had been in the EFCC’s custody in the past eight days facing interrogation from the operatives on the huge sums he allegedly collected from the office of the former National Security Adviser (NSA).

According to the charge signed by Aliyu Yusuf, Deputy Director, Legal and Prosecution department of EFCC, the accused was alleged to have between October 2014 and March 2015 allegedly received N2.1 billion from the NSA office into the account of Daar Investment and Holding Company for the funding of media activities for the 2015 presidential election campaign of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

The alleged offence is contrary to Section 58 (4) (b) of the Public Procurement Act 2007 and punishable under section 58 (6) and 7 of the same Act.

Part of the charge reads, “that you, Dr. Raymond Dokpesi and Daar Investment and Holding Company Limited between October 2014 and March 19, 2015 in Abuja, conducted procurement fraud by means of fraudulent and corrupt act, to wit: receipt of payment into the account of Daar Investment and Holding Company Limited with First Bank of Nigeria Plc. of public funds in the sum of N2,120,000,000 from the account of the office of National Security Adviser (NSA) with the Central Bank of Nigeria for the funding of media activities for the 2015 presidential election campaign for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 58 (4) (b) of the Public Procurement Act, 2007 and punishable under Section 58 (6) & (7) of the same Act.”

“That you, Dr. Raymond Dokpesi and Daar Investment and Holding Company Limited between October 2014 and 19 March, 2015 in Abuja, entered into a purported contract on presidential media initiative and received payment in the sum of N2,120,000,000 into the account of Daar Investment and Holding Company Limited with First Bank of Nigeria Plc. from the account of the office of National Security Adviser (NSA) with the Central Bank of Nigeria on account of the purported contract without a “Certificate of “No Objection to Contract Award” duly issued by Public Procurement Bureau and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 16 (1) (b), (4) & (5) of the Public Procurement Act, 2007 and punishable under Section 58 (6) of the same Act.”

“That you Dr. Raymond Dokpesi and Daar Investment and Holding Company Limited between 22 January and 19 March, 2015 in Abuja, knew that an aggregate sum of N2,120,000,000 directly represented the proceeds of criminal conduct of Col. Mohammed Sambo Dasuki (retd) and Shuaibu Salisu, who were National Security Adviser and the Director of Finance, Office of the National Security Adviser (NSA) respectively to wit: criminal breach of trust in respect of the said amount, used the said property and you thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 17 (b) of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (Establishment) Act, 2004.”

An attempt by Dokpesi’s lawyer, Chief Mike Ozekhome (SAN) to move application for his bail yesterday was unsuccessful as the prosecution counsel Mr. Rotimi Jacobs SAN insisted that he had just been served with a copy of the bail application.

Jacobs told Justice Kolawole that he needed time to study and react to the fundamental issues raised by the accused person in the bail application.

By consent of the two lawyers, Justice Kolawole fixed today for argument on whether to grant the bail to Dokpesi or not.

However, the trial has been fixed for January 17, 18 and February 2 and 3, 2016.

Justice Gabriel Kolawole will today at 12 noon hear his bail application.

source: : sunnewsonline.com