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Maina extradited from Niger

He was arrested on November 30 after being declared wanted.

Abdulrasheed Abdullahi Maina, former Chairman of Pension Reform Task Team has arrived in Nigeria, after his extradition from the Niger Republic.

He was arrested on November 30 after being declared wanted.

His extradition is the joint work of the Nigerian police and Interpol in Abuja and their Nigerien counterpart.

Police had on Tuesday said it was working out Maina’s extradition after his arrest in Niamey so he could face criminal proceedings.

Maina had earlier been declared wanted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for offences bordering on Procurement Fraud and Obtaining by False Pretence.

His surety Senator Ali Ndume was detained for his absence at the last court sitting.

 

On Thursday, the Federal High Court, Abuja, on Thursday, granted the request of a lawyer, Ademola Adedipe, to withdraw from the N2 billion money laundering case involving Abdulrasheed Maina, former Chairman, the defunct Pension Reform Task Team (PRTT).

 
Justice Okon Abang, in a ruling, said the application succeeded in accordance with Section 349(7) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA) 2015.
 
Adedipe before now, had been appearing for the second defendant in the case, Common Input Property and Investment Ltd, a firm said to be owned by Maina.
Maina (1st defendant) was arraigned before Justice Abang, on Oct. 25, 2019, by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) alongside his firm.
Although he is facing 12-counts bordering on money laundering, he had pleaded not guilty to all the charges.
Adedipe had, on Nov. 25, hinged his decision to quit the case on the grounds that his brief had not been perfected by his client.
But Justice Abang had turned down the application by the lawyer to quit the case.
The judge declined to grant the lawyer’s plea on the premise that the application was not in the court file.
But acknowledging the notice of disengagement with charge number: FHC/ABJ/CR/258/2019 dated and filed on Nov 25, Justice Abang issued an order discharging the lawyer from the case.
“Counsel having filed an application in line with Section 349(7) of ACJA 2015 to withdraw his legal representation for the 2nd defendant, the order is hereby granted,” he ruled.
However, the continuation of Maina’s trial proceeded in his absence with the ninth prosecution witness, Rouqquaya Ibrahim, an EFCC investigator, testifying against the ex-pension reformed boss.
Justice Abang adjourned the matter until Dec. 4 for continuation of trial in absentia.(NAN)

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