The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Tuesday arraigned former Acting Director General of Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Haruna Baba Jauro, his brother in-law, Dr Dauda Bistrus Bawa and his company Thlumbau Enterprises Limited before Justice C.M.A Olantoregun of the Federal High Court Lagos on 19 count charge of stealing and money laundering.
Jauro was arrested by the EFCC based on its findings during the investigation of his predecessor, Patrick Akpobolokemi. In the course of investigation, it was discovered that the former Acting DG while being the Executive Director, Finance of the agency received the sum of N156,477,500 as gratification from Akpobolokemi to allow the former DG and his cohorts embezzle large sums of monies from the agency. The said monies were traced to Jauro’s company account, Thlumbau Enterprises Limited, which his brother in-law, the second accused person oversees.
Jauro is said to have refunded N35, 000,000 (Thirty Five Million Naira), being part of the money he collected from Akpobolokemi to the Federal Government.
One charge read, “That you Haruna Baba Jauro, Dr Dauda Bistrus Bawa and Thlumbau Enterprises Limited on or about the 6th day of January 2014, in Lagos within the jurisdiction of this honorable court did conspire among yourselves to commit an offense to wit: conversion of the sum of N156,477,500 ( One Hundred and Fifty Six Million, Four Hundred Seventy Seven Thousand, Five Hundred Naira Only) property of the Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, knowing that the said sum were proceeds of stealing and thereby committed an offense contrary to section 18(a) of the Money Laundering Prohibition (Amendment) Act, 2012 and punishable under section 15(3) of the same Act.
The accused persons pleaded not guilty after listening to the charge.
Rotimi Oyedepo, the prosecution counsel did not oppose the bail application filed by the counsel representing the accused persons.
Consequently, the accused persons were granted bail in the sum of N5, 000,000 (Five Million Naira ) and two sureties in like sum. The sureties must be resident within the jurisdiction of the court and must present tax clearance for the last three years.
The case was adjourned to May 16 for trial.
In a related development, the EFCC also arraigned Alu Dismas, personal assistant to Patrick Akpobolokemi, Calistus Nwabueze, Executive Director, NIMASA and two companies: Grand Pact Limited and Global Seal Investment Limited, on eight count charge of stealing and Money Laundering before Justice Olantoregun.
Calistus as Executive Director, was said to have received the total sum of N136,105,000 (One Hundred and Thirty Six Million, One Hundred and Five Thousand Naira ) from Akpobolokemi.
The second accused person, Alu Dismas who was personal assistant to Akpobolokemi also received various sums of money.
The accused persons pleaded not guilty to the charge and were admitted to bail in the sum of N5,000,000 (Five Million Naira Only) and two sureties in like sum. The case was adjourned to May 16 for trial.