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Published On: Fri, Dec 20th, 2019

$1.1bn scam: Ex- AGF, Adoke arrested in Abuja – Ozekhome

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By Vivian Okejeme, Abuja

Officials of the International Police yesterday arrested Nigeria’s former Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mohammed Bello Adoke.
Authoritative sources said Adoke’s arrest was carried out by the Interpol on behalf of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.
The arrest occurred at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja shortly after the ex-minister arrived from Dubai.
According to Mike Ozekhome, Adoke’s Counsel, the ex-minister was arrested on Thursday, December 19, 2019 as soon as he landed at the Abuja airport.
He said Adoke returned to Nigeria after spending five weeks in the custody of the International Criminal Police Organization in Dubai over the controversial OPL 245 transaction.
Ozekhome in a terse message to media houses said, Adoke “was picked up at the foot of the aircraft by Interpol, refusing anyone access to him. He is believed to be on his way to the Interpol office at Area 10, Garki, Abuja.”
However, the present Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN, yesterday, said he has not been officially briefed of Mohammed Adoke, SAN, return to Nigeria from Dubai, United Arab Emirate.
Recall that, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had filed fraud charges against the former Attorney-General over a shady $1.2 billion oil deal.
The EFCC also filed charges against Dan Etete, former petroleum minister, and a businessman, Abubakar Aliyu, for their involvement in the oil deal.
Adoke and former Minister of State for Finance, Yerima Ngama, were said to have approved the transfer of about $1.2 billion into Nigerian accounts controlled by Etete.
Following a warrant of arrest request by the EFCC over the controversial OPL 245 deal, a Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court in Abuja issued the warrant against Adoke, alongside others who were indicted in the shady deal.
The former AGF was arrested at the UAE and detained by the Interpol since November 11, on the strength of the international warrant of arrest issued against him by the federal high court, Abuja.
The Interpol had repatriated Adoke and handed him over to the EFCC after five weeks of detention in Dubai.
Meanwhile, Ozekhome refuted this yesterday, insisted that his client returned to the country ‘’voluntarily’’
Fielding questions from the Judicial Correspondents at the Ministry of Justice, Abuja, on his position of the news about Adoke’s return to the country, Malami said he was yet to receive a formal briefing on Adoke’s arrival to the country.
Asked what would be the Federal Government’s next line of action with respect to the pending cases against the ex-AGF, Malami said he would not comment on a matter that is already before the court.
“I think there are multiple judicial cases pending before the judiciary and against the background of subsisting principle of the law, I wouldn’t want to comment one way or the other in that respect or direction because I cannot be talking in preemptive sense or preempting the judicial position as it relates to the matter.”

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