The accused pleaded not guilty
A former police corporal, Blessing Adache, was on Thursday arraigned along with one Michael Obonilo at an FCT Chief Magistrates’ Court, Karu, on charges of criminal conspiracy, forgery and impersonation.
The prosecutor, Bulus Samuel, told the court that the accused persons conspired to create three ghost salary accounts through which they defrauded the Nigeria Police Force of N348,000 monthly since 2010.
Mr. Samuel added that Ms. Adache was an Accounts Officer attached to the Mechanised Salary Section of the police in the Nigerian capital, Abuja.
“The accused persons created the three accounts in Ecobank and Keystone Bank with fictitious names and placed them on the police payroll on a monthly salary of N116, 000 each. The accused persons had been collecting the illegal salaries from the fictitious accounts since 2010 before they were arrested on December 30, 2013,” the prosecutor said.
He said the accused was arrested while trying to withdraw money from one of the accounts with the fictitious name of ASP Baba James.
Mr. Samuel stated that during interrogation, Mr. Obonilo said Ms. Adache used him to withdraw money from the accounts for which he was paid N15,000 only.
The offence, according to the prosecutor, contravened sections 97, 364, 132 and 289 of the Penal Code. He told the court not to grant them bail so as not to interfere with investigation.
The accused persons pleaded not guilty to the charges.
The defence counsel, Tajudeen Adegbite, applied for their bail, informing the court that Ms. Adache was a mother of three and was in the eighth month of another pregnancy.
The chief magistrate, Hadiza Shagari granted bail in the sum of N500,000 each with two reliable sureties in like sum. She said that one of the sureties must be a civil servant not below Grade Level 15 and must be resident within the jurisdiction of the court.
She adjourned the case to February 5 for continuation of hearing.