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Money Laundering: Court Issues Bench Warrant On Senator Akpan

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The Federal High Court sitting, Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, on Monday, granted an application made by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC), for the arrest of a serving senator, Bassey Akpan.

The warrant compels him to appear in court and face the money laundering charges preferred against him by the commission.

The serving senator, according to his counsel, Samuel Ikpo, failed to appear in court because he was not served a copy of the charge.

Mr Ikpo also added that he was instructed by his client, to appear in court and receive the charge on his behalf.

However, the prosecution, through its counsel, Mohammed Sadisu Abubakar, gave a detailed account of the court on efforts made by the commission to serve the lawmaker.

After listening to both sides, the judge upheld the arguments of the prosecution.

“Section 114 of the ACJA is instructive on this issue. The court can issue a warrant on the first day, depending on the circumstances and nature of the case. One should lead by example and to whom much is given, much is expected.

“Where the defendant found it necessary to attend a legislative function, he should also find it obligatory to honour invitations by law enforcement agencies. Justice is for all in the temple of justice, and if there is an application to be granted in the interest of justice, it should be the application made by the prosecution.

“The court, therefore, grants the application and consequently issue a bench warrant against the defendant for his production in this court on the next adjourned date”, the court ruled.

The matter was adjourned to June 24, 2019, for arraignment.


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