The money laundering trial of a former Minister of Aviation, Femi Fani-Kayode, and others, was on Wednesday, stalled before a Federal High Court in Lagos, following the absence of a Prosecution and Defence Counsel.
The case which was initially fixed for continuation of the trial could not proceed as the prosecution and defense counsel were said to be appearing at the court of appeal
Fani-Kayode is charged alongside a former Minister of State for Finance, Nenandi Usman, and Yusuf Danjuma, a former Chairman of the Association of Local Governments of Nigeria (ALGON).
Also charged is a company, Jointrust Dimensions Nigeria Ltd.
EFCC filed a 17-count charge bordering on N4.6 billion money laundering against them before a former judge, Justice Mohammed Aikawa.
The defendants had each pleaded not guilty to the charges and were granted.
The trial had begun before Justice Aikawa and witnesses were still being led in evidence until Aikawa was transferred out of the Lagos division.
The charge was consequently, re-assigned to a new judge, Justice Daniel Osaigor, and they were consequently, re-arraigned on Jan. 24. 2022.
The trial has since commenced in the case and witnesses are still giving before the court.
Although the defendants were present in court on Wednesday, alongside some junior counsel from the office of defense counsel, a continuation of the trial will, however, resume on Jan. 26.
In the charge, the defendants were alleged to have committed the offenses between January and March 2015 in Lagos.
They were alleged to have at various times, unlawfully retained over N4.6 billion which they reasonably ought to have known formed part of the proceeds of stealing and corruption.
Meanwhile, in counts 15 to 17 Fani-Kayode and one Olubode Oke who is said to be at large, were alleged to have made cash payments of about N30 million, over the amount allowed by law, without going through a financial institution.
The said payments are alleged to have been made to one Paste Poster Co (PPC) of No 125 Lewis St., Lagos, over amounts allowed by law
All offenses were said to have contravened the provisions of sections 15 (3) (4), 16 (2) (b), and 16 (5) of the Money laundering (prohibition) (Amendment) Act, 2012.