EFCC presents video evidence of $1 million cash recovered from ex- Nigeria defence chief

Alex Badeh in court Photo: DailyPost
Alex Badeh in court Photo: DailyPost

A Federal High Court sitting in Maitama, Abuja, presided over by Justice Okon Abang on Wednesday admitted in evidence the search warrant used by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, in conducting a search on a house located at No. 6, Ogun Rivers Street, Maitama, Abuja belonging to a former Chief of Defence Staff, Alex Badeh. during which $1million cash was recovered in his wardrobe.

Mr. Badeh is standing trial alongside Iyalikam Nigeria Limited on a 10-count charge bordering on money laundering, criminal breach of trust and corruption to the tune of N3.97 billion.

He allegedly abused his office as CDS by using the dollar equivalent of the sum of N1.4 billion removed from the accounts of the Nigerian Air Force to purchase properties in choice areas of Abuja between January and December, 2013.

At the last sitting, the EFCC through its PW15, Mohammed Goji, told the court how a search conducted on the house of the former CDS led to the recovery of the money.

Attempt by the prosecuting counsel, Rotimi Jacobs to tender the search warrant, a red box and the waybill as evidence was, however, objected to by Mr. Badeh’s counsel, Lasun Sanusi.

Mr. Sanusi argued that the documents were purportedly obtained from an illegal search.

According to him, the law gave the owner of the property the impetus to nominate a representative to witness such search if he or she could not be present.

“It is on record that the defendant was still in detention when the purported search was done in his house at Maitama which is a clear violation of the law.

“My Lord, we are not against the court admitting the search warrant as evidence but we vehemently oppose to the admissibility of the other items,’’ he said.

In response, Mr. Jacobs argued that Section 149 and 150 of ACJA which deals with house search warrant permitted the presence of two witnesses and the person the warrant is addressed to. He went further to explain how the witness can be any one in the neighbourhood.

Justice Abang in his ruling on the admissibility of the documents at the resumed sitting on Wednesday held that, “the first search warrant dated February 3, 2016 and executed on February 11, 2016 was not objected to” and it’s marked at exhibit T103.

The judge also held that issue of the legality of the item “is premature at this time” adding that, “it’s an issue for evidence in the final address”.

Consequently, the documents were admitted as exhibits T104, T105, T106 respectively.

Under further cross-examination, the PW15 insisted that the search was conducted in line with the enabling law and was recorded in a video clip.

Mr. Jacobs sought to tender the clip in evidence saying, “I will like to tender the DVD containing the search in evidence”, but its admissibility was again objected to by Mr. Sanusi, who said the document never came as part of the proof of evidence.

Mr. Sanusi added that, “we are seeing it for the first time in court even in civil cases we are to be given a copy of evidence so that we don’t fall into an ambush”.

He, therefore, asked for adjournment to enable him go through the evidence with his client.

Justice Abang after listening to the submissions of both counsel ordered the prosecution to oblige the defence with a copy of the clip and other documents they might wish to tender as evidence in the course of the trial.

The judge, thereafter, adjourned to March 20 – 23 for continuation of trial.

Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility

 

Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.

For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.

By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.

Donate


NEVER MISS A THING AGAIN! Subscribe to our newsletter

* indicates required

DOWNLOAD THE PREMIUM TIMES MOBILE APP

Now available on

  Premium Times Android mobile applicationPremium Times iOS mobile applicationPremium Times blackberry mobile applicationPremium Times windows mobile application

TEXT AD: New Discovery! Click Here To See A Miracle Device That Can Cure DIABETES, BLOOD PRESSURE, STROKE, ARTHRITIS, PAINS, OBESITY And 50 Other CHRONIC DISEASES Without Drugs Or Herbs.. Click Here Now To See It


All rights reserved. This material and any other material on this platform may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, written or distributed in full or in part, without written permission from PREMIUM TIMES.