A judge,Nicholas Oweibo, of the Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos,on Tuesday, adjourned the trial of Azeez Fashola, also known as Naira Marley, till February 16, 2022.
PREMIUM TIMES reported how the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) arrested Naira Marley, Zlatan, and four others in May 2019 in connection with an alleged case of internet fraud and money laundering.
The controversial artiste was arraigned on May 20, 2019, but pleaded not guilty and was granted bail.
The anti-graft agency alleged that some of the credit cards discovered in his residence bore the names Nicole Louise Malyon and Timea Fedorne Tatar.
He pleaded “not guilty” to the charges when he was arraigned for the first time on May 20, 2019.
At the last sitting on October 27, 2021, Augustine Anosike, a forensic analyst testifying as the second prosecution witness, had concluded his examination-in-chief.
The court subsequently adjourned till November 30, 2021 for cross-examination.
At Tuesday’s proceeding, however, the prosecuting counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, told the court that the witness was absent in court on “compassionate grounds”.
“I only got information as to the absence of the witness at about 9.30am while still in the parking lot of the court this morning,” he said, stressing that it was not in his character to waste the court’s time.
The defence counsel, Olalekan Ojo, however, lamented the delay.
“It is rather unfortunate that the matter could not proceed today.
“ The prosecution ought to have given sufficient notice of the witness’ absence,” he said.
Subsequently, the judge, Mr Oweibo, adjourned till February 16 and 17, 2022 for continuation of trial.
During his trial on October 26, a witness chronicled the content of 2410 messages analysed in Naira Marley’s iPhone.
The EFCC alleged that Naira Marley and his accomplices conspired to use different Access Bank ATM cards to defraud their victims.
A second prosecution witness, Augustine Anosike, narrated how the messages as well as different credit card numbers were extracted from the singer’s phone.
Led in evidence by the prosecutor, Rotimi Oyedepo, who examined him on Exhibit F, the witness first confirmed to the court that the said Exhibit F was a conclusion of his analysis of the defendant’s iPhone.
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