In a significant ruling by the Federal High Court in Lagos, three individuals, namely Kasumu Ademola, Salau Mikailu, and Ganiyu Ishola, have been handed 20-year prison terms for defrauding a stock firm of a staggering sum of N45.6 million. Justice Chukwuejekwu Aneke, after carefully reviewing the evidence, found the defendants guilty of the offenses brought against them.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had initially charged the convicted individuals with four counts, including conspiracy, unlawful fund conversion, and money laundering. When presented before the court, the trio pleaded not guilty. They were subsequently granted bail on varying conditions and were first arraigned in 2019.
However, in an unexpected turn of events in 2021, the defendants made a dramatic change in their pleas, admitting their guilt on all charges. Their revised stance paved the way for the recent proceedings that culminated in the verdict.
The case centered around the conspiratorial acts of Ademola, Mikailu, and Ishola, who were found to have colluded in unlawfully converting 298,550 stocks belonging to the late Joseph Adeyemi, valued at N34 million. Additionally, they were accused of retaining an accumulated sum of N9.481 million in their bank account without lawful authorization.
During the hearing on Wednesday, the defense counsels, O Muyideen and A. Olufemi, pleaded for leniency on behalf of their clients, highlighting the fact that the trio had been in detention since their initial arrest in 2018.
After careful consideration, Justice Aneke delivered the judgment, imposing a five-year sentence for each of the four counts against the convicts.
- Trio receives 20-year imprisonment for defrauding a stock firm of N45.6 million.
- Convicted individuals initially pleaded not guilty but later changed their pleas to guilty.
- Defendants found guilty of converting stocks valued at N34 million and unlawfully retaining N9.481 million.