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EFCC arraigns wonder bank operator

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By Lambert Tyem

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC) yesterday arraigned a Wonder Bank operator, Mr. Moses Samanja Audu, before Justice Mohammed Shuaibu of the Federal High Court, Kaduna, on a one count charge bordering on fraudulent operation without license and obtaining funds under false presence.
Mr. Audu, charged alongside his company, Miriam Moses Ventures Limited, pleaded not guilty to the charge.
Subsequently, the defense counsel, Usman Ndaliman Ahmed, informed the court that he had earlier submitted an application for bail before it, which Justice Shuaibu quickly refuted saying there is no such application before him.
In his words, Wilson Uwujaren Ag. Head, Media and Publicity of the EFCC, said "The prosecuting counsel, Ms. Jijah Bwala disclosed that she was served a motion for bail application inside the courtroom and that she informed the defense counsel that she will need time to respond to the motion.
While adjourning the case to May 17th, 2012, Justice Shuaibu urged the prosecution to line up its witnesses as the trial will commence on that day after hearing the bail application.
Audu’s arrest followed a petition to the EFCC dated June 16th, 2010, from A. O. Agbola of Cheakley Chambers on behalf of Mrs. Miriam Ines Rotman (nee Garcia Milla Jurado), a citizen and resident of Netherlands. The petitioner copied the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, on the fraudulent activities of Mr. Audu who incorporated a wonder bank for the purpose of defrauding unsuspecting Nigerians and Mrs. Rotman, who was unwittingly made a director.
The one-count charge reads: “that you, Moses Samanja Audu and Miriam Moses Ventures Limited, sometimes between 2010 and 2011, at Kaduna, within the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court transacted banking business by receiving deposits from the public, without a valid license from the Central Bank of Nigeria and thereby committed an offence punishable under section 2 (2) of the Banks and Other Financial Institutions Act, Cap B3, Vol.2, laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004”.

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