A Federal High Court in Abuja has vacated its interim order for the forfeiture of 40 properties linked to former Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, to the federal government.
Justice Inyang Ekwo vacated the order on Friday over the non-disclosure of relevant information by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), especially over Ekweremadu’s detention in the United Kingdom.
Justice Ekwo agreed with the submission of Ekweremadu’s counsel, Adegboyega Awomolo (SAN) that the detention of his client would not permit him to defend himself over the ownership of the properties.
The EFCC had on November 4, 2022, obtained an order from the court for the interim forfeiture of the said properties as proceeds of corruption.
But Ekweremadu in an application moved by Awomolo on December 15, 2022, contended that the forfeiture order was obtained in error as the anti-graft agency failed to disclose his travails at the Uxbridge Magistrate Court in the UK, where he is being remanded on allegations of human trafficking.
The senator was accused of trafficking one David Ukpo for the purposes of harvesting his kidney for his (Ekweremadu’s) daughter’s much-needed transplant.
Specifically, Ekweremadu alleged that the EFCC fraudulently obtained the forfeiture order for the government by concealing information that the investigation on the 40 properties started as far back as 2008.