Five CBN, Zenith Bank workers remanded over fresh N1.9b scam

Central Bank Of Nigeria building

Central Bank Of Nigeria building

THREE workers of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and two members of staff of Zenith Bank were yesterday arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), before a Federal High Court, sitting in Ibadan, Oyo State on a fresh N1.9 billion briquetting scam alleged to have been jointly carried out by them.

EFCC spokesman, Wilson Uwujaren gave the names of the suspects as Kolawole Babalola, Olaniran Muniru Adeola, Toogun Kayode Philip (all CBN staff), Ajuwon Bolade and Samuel Ogbeide of Zenith Bank.

He informed that the suspects were docked before Justice A. O Faji. They were later remanded in prison custody.
“Three employees of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN and two staff of Zenith bank, were on Thursday remanded in Agodi Prison, Ibadan for defrauding the apex bank and Zenith bank, a total sum of N1.9 billion. They were remanded in prison consequent on their arraignment by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission before a Federal High Court, sitting in Ibadan, Oyo State on a 14-count charge bordering on conspiracy, fraud and stealing.”

He informed that the bankers were alleged to have defrauded the CBN and Zenith Bank respectively. Specifically, the apex bank employees were alleged to have compromised the CBN’s briquetting exercise, by stealing huge sums of mutilated higher denomination Naira currencies meant to be exchanged for new notes. The other bankers allegedly acted as accomplices to the crime and also helped themselves to a sizeable chunk of the money. They however, pleaded not guilty to the charges.

In view of their pleas, prosecuting counsel, Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), prayed the court for a trial date and that the accused be remanded in prison custody but counsel to the fourth accused person, Dare Adebayo said he had filed an application for bail before the court and served the prosecution with copies of the application. All other defense counsels told the court that they had also done same.

Justice Faji, however, adjourned the matter to June 12, 2015 for hearing of bail applications. He also ordered that the accused persons be remanded in Agodi Prison, Ibadan.

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