A Federal High Court in Benin City, the capital of Edo State in southern Nigeria, has again adjourned the Judgement in the case of money laundering involving Micheal Igbinedion, Patrick Eboigbodin and their four companies.
- The Court has adjourned the case three times
- Justice Liman said the ruling will hold on April 17
- He says the adjournment will be the last
- The accused were arraigned on an 81-count chard bordering on money laundering
It is the third time that the court has failed to deliver its ruling.
Justice J. Liman apologised for the several adjournments, saying ruling on the matter will now be made on April 17, 2015.
He explained that the first adjournment was due to the protracted judiciary strike that ended in February, while the second was as a result of his ill-health.
“I promise that this will be the last adjournment which will be for a very close date after counsels re-adopt their written addresses”, he said.
But before adjourning to April 17, Abubakar Shamsudeen and Omosede Igbinedion, holding brief for Ricky Tafa and Mike Ozekhome, both lawyers, respectively, re-adopted their written addresses, which were first adopted before Justice Liman on November 14, 2014.
Richard Ahonaruogo also re-adopted his written address, as well as Tayo Olukotun, who held brief for counsel to Economic Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Rotimi Jacobs.
Explaining the essence of re-adoption of written addresses at the end of proceedings, Olukotun said that “the constitutional provision is that after 90 days of adopting written addresses and there was no miscarriage of justice, judgement can still be delivered. But re-adoption of written addresses by both counsels is advised, to avoid technicalities”.
According to him, some of these technicalities could become a ground for an appeal.
Patrick Eboigbodin and Micheal Igbinedion, younger brother to Lucky Igbinedion, former Edo State governor, along with their companies: Gava Corporation Limited; Romrig Nigeria Limited; PML Securities Company Limited and PML Nigeria Limited, were arraigned by the EFCC on an 81-count charge, bordering on alleged money laundering, misappropriation of funds, conspiracy and abuse of office.