Judge Orders Temporary Forfeiture Of More Alleged Diezani Loot
A Federal High Court Sitting in Lagos has directed a former Minister of Petroleum, Diezani Allison-Madueke to temporarily forfeit some expensive jewellery to the government.
The jewellery, valued at about $40m had earlier been recovered by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) from the former Minister’s premises.
The order was given by Justice Nicholas Oweibo when he granted a motion exparte application brought before him by the EFCC counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo.
Naija News understands the expensive jewellery comprised wristwatches, necklaces, bracelets, bangles, earrings and more.
The EFCC had argued that they were reasonably suspected to have been acquired with proceeds of unlawful activities of the former Minister.
The anti-graft agency also noted that Mrs Allison-Madueke’s known and verified lawful income is far less than the value of the jewellery sought to be forfeited.
Relying on the provision of Section 17 of the Advance Fee Fraud Act 2006 to order the forfeiture, Justice Oweibo agreed with the EFCC that the court has the statutory powers to order the forfeiture.
The judge also ordered the EFCC to publish in any national newspaper the interim order of forfeiture to serve as notice to the former Minister or anyone interested in the assets to be forfeited to appear before the court to show cause within 14days why the assets should not be permanently forfeited to the Federal Government.
Further proceedings were thereafter adjourned till August 13.