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Money laundering: Kalu to be re-arraigned on Tuesday

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) will on Tuesday re-arraign a former governor of Abia State, Orji Kalu, over alleged diversion of funds, sources…

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) will on Tuesday re-arraign a former governor of Abia State, Orji Kalu, over alleged diversion of funds, sources said on Monday.

Kalu was on December 5, 2019, convicted and sentenced to 12-year imprisonment by a Federal High Court in Lagos on a 39-count charge of money laundering to the tune of N7.6bn during his tenure as governor between 1999 and 2007.

Kalu’s co-defendants, Slok Nigeria Ltd and a former Director of Finance of the Abia State Government House, Jones Udeogu challenged the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court in Lagos to conduct the trial after the presiding judge, Justice Mohammed Idris, who was elevated to the Court of Appeal, returned to conclude the proceedings.

The Supreme Court in May 2020 set aside the judgment of the high court and declared as unconstitutional the provision of section 396(7) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015, on which Justice Idris relied on to return from the Court of Appeal to conclude the trial.

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