The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC yesterday arraigned Pastor Osagie Ize -Iyamu, PDP governorship candidate in Edo State; Lucky Imasuen, former deputy governor of Edo State, Chief Dan Orbih, PDP Chairman in Edo State; Tony Aziegbemi and Efe Erimuoghae before Justice P.I.Ajoku of the Federal High Court, Benin City, Edo State on an eight count chargebordering on money laundering.
The defendants were alleged to have sometime in March 2015 in Benin City, directly taken possession of the sum of seven hundred million ( N700,000,000) without any contract award which sum was allegedly part of proceeds of an unlawful act, to wit: fraud and corruption.
The five defendants pleaded not guilty to all the counts when they were read to them.
In view of their plea, the prosecution counsel, Aso Larry Peters asked the court to fix a date for trial and to remand the defendants in prison custody .
However, counsel to the 1st defendant, Charles. U. Edosuwan (SAN) informed the court that the first defendant has filed a bail application before the court.
He pleaded with the court to grant his client bail on self recognition, adding that his client submitted himself voluntary to the Commission when he heard they wanted to see him.
The same argument was canvassed by Counsels to the second , third ,fourth and fifth defendants, O.G. Izevbuwa(Dr) , Kehinde Oguwunmiju (SAN) Ferdinard O.Orbih (SAN) Jim Akhere( Professor) asking the court to grant their client bail. They all align their submission with that of counsel to the first defendant in asking the court to grant their client bail.
The prosecution counsel vehemently opposed the bail application saying he had filed a 12 paragraph counter affividavit motion.
The prosecution counsel, however, argued that though bail is at the discretion of the court, if the court must grant them bail, it should come with a stringent conditions, considering the amount involved and that they should have their data captured in the criminal record registry.
Justice P.I.Ajoko after listening all counsels submission granted bail to the defendants in the sum of 10 million naira each with two sureties in like sum. The sureties must not be below grade level 16 and be resident in Edo State.
The sureties must have a landed property in Edo State and must depost their passport with the court which will be verify by both the court and the EFCC. The case was adjourned to July 4, 2018 for trial.
The court ordered that the defendant’s be remanded in prison custody until they perfect their bail conditions.