N1.4bn fraud: EFCC arraigns three AIICO Capital employees

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arraigned three staff of AIICO Capital Limited, a subsidiary of AIICO Insurance Plc, over alleged N1.4 billion fraud.

The anti-graft agency arraigned the three personnel before an Ikeja special offices court on Thursday.

According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), the investment management firm staff; Harriet Onome, Olajumoke Akano, and Olabode Ogunlere were charged with four counts of conspiracy and stealing.

The three personnel denied the charges.

Chinenye Okezie, EFCC prosecutor, claimed that the defendants committed the offences last year in Lagos alongside one Olanrewaju Fabunmi, who is now at large.

“Onome sometime between November and December 2020 converted to her own use the aggregate sum of N419.9 million,” Okezie said.

“Akano, within the same period, dishonestly converted to her own use the aggregate sum of N167 million.

“Between October and November 2020, Ogunlere fraudulently converted the aggregate sum of N65 million to his personal use. The said sums are property of AIICO Capital Ltd.”

According to the EFCC, these offences contravene Sections 287(8) and 411 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.

Following the arraignment, Tayo Oyetibo, Onome’s defence counsel, and Adeyinka Olumide-Fusika, Akano and Ogunlere’s counsel, applied for the defendants’ bail to be granted in liberal terms.

The EFCC prosecutor opposed the bail applications, explaining that Onome is a flight risk, who has a two-year valid visa to the United Kingdom.

“If the court should consider granting the defendants bail, it should be on stiff conditions that will ensure the defendant’s attendance in court,” she added.

However, in her ruling, Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo granted each of the defendants N50 million bail with two sureties in like sum.

“One of the sureties must be a landowner, and the Registrar of Titles shall verify the location of the land,” she said.

“The other surety shall be a close relative who must be resident in Lagos. The identities of the sureties must be verified by the court.”

The court adjourned the case to October 12, 2021, for trial.

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