Judge blasts EFCC lawyer over ‘professional misconduct’

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Acting EFCC chairman, Ibrahim Magu

Acting EFCC chairman, Ibrahim Magu

A Lagos High Court Judge, Justice Oluwatoyin Ipaye has blasted a legal counsel with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC , Mr. Babatunde Sonaiki for what she described as ‘gross professional misconduct’.

Justice Ipaye gave the bashing while hearing a criminal charge filed by the EFCC against a business woman, Mrs Moji Yakubu, her company, Monan Trading Company and nine persons over alleged N800 million land theft charge.

The commission had alleged that Yakubu and her co-defendants had conspired to steal about 10 hectares of land located at Sangotedo, Lagos, Southwest Nigeria.

During the defendant’s formal arraignment in February this year, the judge had raised the issue on whether land could be stolen and asked the EFCC counsel to address her on the matter.

While the matter was slated for ruling, the EFCC lawyer went before another judge, Justice Aishat Opensanwo and obtained a forfeiture order to temporary seal an ongoing project by Monan Trading Company on the 10 hectare land.

When the matter came up on Thursday, Justice Ipaye informed parties that the ruling was not quite ready and that the matter would be adjourned till September.

Counsel to the defendant, Mr Yemi Adeshina, however, drew the attention of the judge to the forfeiture order allegedly obtained by the EFCC against his client.

He told the court that the order amounted to window shopping by the EFCC and should be immediately set aside.

When asked by the judge if the allegation by Adeshina was true, EFCC lawyer, Sonaiki confirmed that he had actually gone before Justice Opesanwo to obtain the temporary forfeiture order.

The judge immediately blasted Shonoiki for going before another court to obtain such order when the matter was still pending before her court.

Justice Ipaye noted that it appeared that the EFCC was poised on taking the law into its hand …Read More

Source:: PM Newspaper