Supreme Court orders EFCC to return N9b to ex-First Bank Director

By AdvocateNews on 14/03/2021

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Dauda Lawal
Dauda Lawal

The Supreme Court has ruled that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission must return the N9 billion it seized from a former executive director of the First Bank, Dauda Lawal.

A five-man panel of the apex court led by Justice Muhammad Lawal Garba, on Friday, in a unanimous decision, dismissed the appeal filed by the EFCC against the judgment of the Court of Appeal which had set aside an earlier ruling by the Federal High Court delivered on February 16, 2007 for the final forfeiture of the sum of N9,080,000,000.00 (Nine Billion and Eighty Million Naira) to the Federal Government of Nigeria.

The Court of Appeal, Lagos Division, had in an Appeal No CA/LAG/CV/480/2019 DAUDA LAWAL V. EFCC & ANOR dated March 25, 2020, ruled that:

“The decisions of the Federal High Court, Coram Judice: Hassan, J. delivered in Suit No: FHC/L/CS/13/2017 on 16th February 2017 are hereby set aside. The order of final forfeiture of the sum of N9,080,000,000.00 (Nine Billion and Eighty Million Naira) to the Federal Government of Nigeria is hereby set aside. It is hereby ordered that the said sum of N9,080,000,000.00 (Nine Billion and Eighty Million Naira) be returned to the Appellant forthwith.”

In the Friday judgment, the Supreme Court judgment unanimously affirmed and upheld the decision of the Court of Appeal in Appeal No: SC.212/2020, EFCC v. DAUDA LAWAL.

It affirmed and determined that the order of final forfeiture of N9,080,000,000.00 made against  Lawal be set aside and rescinded; and that the said sum be returned to Lawal forthwith.

The case by the EFCC against Lawal began in May 2016 when the commission accused him of money laundering and of obtaining monies suspected to be proceeds of unlawful activities.

Posted 14/03/2021 07:27:42 AM

 

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