The Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has ordered the forfeiture of 12 landed properties linked to a former Director of Finance at the Nigerian Air Force, Air Vice-Marshal Jacobs Adigun.
The lands located in Lagos & Abuja are to be forfeited to the Federal Government.
Justice Mohammed Liman gave the order for the temporary forfeiture of the properties on Friday following an ex parte application by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Counsel for the EFCC, Rotimi Oyedepo, told the court that the properties were reasonably suspected to be proceeds of a N21.4bn fraud allegedly perpetrated by Adigun alongside Air Commodore Olugbenga Gbadebo and a former Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Adesola Amosu (retd.).
The trio was alleged to have conspired to convert the funds belonging to the Nigerian Air Force, to their personal use, sometime in 2014 and are already facing trial before another judge of the court.
In an affidavit filed in support of the forfeiture application, an investigating officer with the EFCC, Akube Okechuckwu, said the N21.4bn included N200m paid on January 7, 2014 into NAF Operations account by the Office of the National Security Adviser; N3bn maritime security support paid to NAF by the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency in September 2014; and 18.2bn moved out of NAF accounts into various cronies’ companies.
He said the N21.4bn was diverted through seven firms, namely: Juda Oil and Gas Limited; Namaliki Investment; Lebol Oil and Gas Limited; Hakuri Oil and Gas Limited; Mcallan Oil and Gas Limited; Delfina Oil and Gas Limited and Trapezites BDC.
The EFCC’s counsel, told Justice Liman that it would be in the interest of justice for the court to order a temporary forfeiture of the 12 landed properties linked to Adigun.
He identified the properties to include houses at No. 27 Agodogba Avenue, Parkview Estate, Ikoyi, Lagos; No. 40A Bourdillon Road, Ikoyi, Lagos; Plot 164, Victoria Island Annex (Sinari Daranijo Street), VI, Lagos; Block 54A, Plot 14, Lekki Peninsula Scheme One; Capador Plaza, Adetokunbo Ademola Street, Wuse II, Abuja; Plot 762 Aminu Kano Crescent, Wuse II, Abuja; and No. 39 Agdez Street, Wuse II, Abuja;
Others are Sand Lake Hotel, Plot 3497 Sand Lake Street, Maitama, Abuja; Plot No. 61 Lake Chad Street, Maitama Abuja; No. 2 Imo Rivers Close, off Danube Crescent, Maitama, Abuja; and No. 2 River Palata Street, Maitama, Abuja.
After listening to the submissions of the counsel, Justice Liman made an order for the temporary forfeiture of the properties.
The judge ordered the anti-graft agency to publish the forfeiture order in a national daily newspaper so as to put interested parties ‘on notice’.
He then adjourned till June 9 for anyone with interest in the properties to appear in court to give reasons why the properties should not be permanently forfeited to the Federal Government.