The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission today secured the conviction of two former First Bank staff, Mukhtar Tofa and Yusuf Tafida, before Justice Fatu Riman of the Federal High Court Kano on one count charge of financial malpractice.
The convicts were arraigned by the EFCC on February 7, 2014 alongside one Ibrahim Nagero who upon arraignment pleaded guilty and was immediately convicted and sentenced to two years imprisonment.
The convicts alongside one Aminu Magashi who was discharged and acquitted on Wednesday pleaded not guilty to the one count charge preferred against them.
The convicts ordeal started when their employer wrote a petition to EFCC that the first defendant, Nagero, obtained a loan facility in the sum of N36 million by forging the signature of his father and three of their staff, Mukhtar Ali Tofa, Yusuf Tafida and Aminu A. Magashi.
Investigation by the EFCC revealed that the three first bank staff processed the loan without due diligence which is an offence contrary to section to section 15(2)(a) of the Failed Banks (Recovery of Debts) and Financial Malpractices in Banks Act Cap F2 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 and punishable under section 16(1)(a) of the same Act.
In Wednesday’s judgment, Justice Riman found the evidence of the prosecution witnesses credible and held that the prosecution had proved the ingredients of the charge against the third and fourth defendants, Messrs. Tofa and Tafida beyond reasonable doubt and subsequently convicted them.
The fifth defendant, Magashi was discharged and acquitted because, according to Riman, the prosecution failed to prove the case against him.
The two convicts were sentenced to one year imprisonment with option of N200,000 fine.