From Matthew Irinoye, Lagos
Justice Kudirat Jose of a Lagos State High Court, Ikeja yesterday refused to grant bail application filed by a one-time Lagos socialite, Fred Ajudua, over an alleged theft of $1.69 million instituted against him by Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
The trial judge however, adjourned the hearing of arguments on the bail application, till March 20 to hear the arguments of the EFCC.
It would be recalled that, Ajudua and one Charles Orie are being prosecuted by EFCC for allegedly defrauding two Dutch businessmen – Messrs Remy Cina and Pierre Vijgen, of $1.69 million.
The defendants were re-arrraigned before Justice Jose on February 5 following the transfer of the case from the former trial judge, Justice Joseph Oyewole.
Earlier, justice Jose, in a ruling on Orie’s bail application, permitted him to enjoy the bail granted to him by Oyewole on July 27,2004.
While moving Ajudua’s bail application yesterday, through his counsel, Mr Charles Edosomwan (SAN), said there was an overwhelming medical evidence that Ajudua was ill.
Edosomwan told the court that there was overwhelming medical evidence before the court that Ajudua was suffering from a life-threatening ailment.
He added that his client was ready to face trial contrary to the claim being made by the EFCC that he absconded after he was granted bail on medical grounds in 2005.
According to him, all actions taken by Ajudua were not to evade trial but to stay alive and battle the illness.
He tendered a medical report issued by the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) and some photographs showing Ajudua urinating blood at the hospital, to support the claim.
Edosomwan therefore urged the court to grant Ajudua bail on liberal terms to enable him get proper treatment for the ailment.