The Federal High Court in Lagos has ordered that alleged internet fraudster, Ismaila Mustapha, popularly known as Mompha, be kept in the custody of the Nigerian Correctional Services until the hearing of his bail application.
The court fixed the hearing for his bail for November 29 after he pleaded not guilty to a 14-count charge of money laundering to the tune of N33 billion.
Justice Mohammed Liman gave this order on Monday after Mr Mustapha was arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
The anti-graft agency alleged in the charge signed by one of its counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, that Mompha laundered the funds through a firm, Ismalob Global Investment Ltd, between 2015 and 2018.
Islamob Global Investments was joined as the second defendant in the charge.
EFCC claimed that the funds, domiciled in Fidelity Bank, were moved in tranches of N18 billion and N15 billion.
The commission further alleged that both defendants, not being a financial institution, or an authorized foreign exchange dealer, negotiated a foreign exchange transaction in the sum of N9.42 million, N20 million, N10.4 million, N10 million, N2.46 million, N10 million, N100 million, N61 million, N100 million, N40.7 million and N42 million.
The funds were domiciled in the defendants’ Fidelity Bank account.
The commission alleged that Mompha “between 2015 and 2018… procured Ismalob Global Investment Ltd to retain the aggregate sum of N18,059,353,413 in its account No. 5260000846 domiciled in Fidelity Bank Plc which sum you reasonably ought to have known formed part of the proceeds of unlawful act to wit: fraud.
Mompha, between 2015 and 2017, also allegedly aided the company “to retain the aggregate sum of N14,946,773,393.00 in its account No. 5260000846 domiciled in Fidelity Bank Plc from Pitacalize Ltd.
Both actions were violations of Sections 18(3) and 15(2)(d) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act.2011 as amended and punishable under section 15 (3) of the same Act, the agency said.