BREAKING: Ex-PDP spokesman Olisa Metuh bags 7-year imprisonment

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Court Finds Olisa Metuh Guilty Of Money Laundering
Court Finds Olisa Metuh Guilty Of Money Laundering

BREAKING: Ex-PDP spokesman Olisa Metuh bags 7-year imprisonment – A federal High Court in Abuja has sentenced the former spokesman of the People’s Democratic Party, Olisa Metuh, to seven years imprisonment with effect from today.

The Presiding Judge, Okon Abang, had earlier found Metuh and his company guilty of all the seven-count charge preferred against them by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.

According to judgment, the convict, Mr Metuh, is to pay the sum of N376 Million to the Federal government while his company, Destra Investment Limited will forfeit to the federal government.

While delivering his ruling, Justice Okon said: ” the convict and his team of lawyers had humiliated me, and tried to use different means to intimidate me by writing different petitions against me.

“This country cannot go like this there must be a change in the way we do things.

“The first convict used various media platforms to review my rulings in this matter, ” Justice Abang recounted.

Earlier, while addressing the issue raised by the defendant during the trial that no court has yet convicted Sambo Dasuki, on any money laundering charges to assert that the money paid to the defendant ( Olisa Metuh) is proceeds of any unlawful Act.

The Judge held that Sambo Dasuki need not to be convicted to show that the money paid to the defendant was proceeds from an unlawful Act.

The court ruled that defendant and the office of the NSA had no contract but yet he received the payment of N400 Million.

The trial judge, Justice Okon Abang, found the former National Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) guilty on Tuesday while delivering judgement in the suit instituted against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

The anti-graft agency charged Metuh, who is standing trial alongside his company, Destra investment, with seven counts bordering on criminal diversion of the money received from the office of the former National Security Adviser (NSA), Colonel Sambo Dasuki (rtd).

Delivering judgement in the case, Justice Abang convicted the former PDP spokesman of count one of the charges.

Court Finds Olisa Metuh Guilty Of Money Laundering
Court Finds Olisa Metuh Guilty Of Money Laundering

“It is my view that Metuh took possession of the N400 million from the office of the NSA without contractual agreement; he is guilty of money laundering and is hereby convicted on count one.”

Shortly after he was convicted, the trial judged suspended reading the judgment to allow the former PDP spokesman use the gents.

Upon his return to the courtroom, Justice Abang proceeded with his judgement on the second count of the charges which bordered on the criminal conversion of N400 million.

According to him, the evidence before him shows that the money was used to fund activities of the PDP.

The judge added that Metuh also used the money to acquire a property at Banana Island in Lagos.

He explained that this was contrary to the e-payment mandate which stated that the money was meant for security services, whereas Dextra Investment was not a registered security outfit.

Court Finds Olisa Metuh Guilty Of Money Laundering
Court Finds Olisa Metuh Guilty Of Money Laundering

Justice Abang insisted that the evidence pointed to the fact that the money was deliberately laundered to brighten the chances of the PDP during the general elections in 2015.

He added that Metuh failed to explain the transfer of N50 million from the N400 million to the joint account of himself and his wife

“It is, therefore, manifestly clear that the defendant converted the money for PDP campaign activities and I find him guilty and is hereby convicted accordingly,” the judge declared.

On count three which bordered on concealment of funds, Justice Abang says the e-payment mandate showed that the money was released for security services but was concealed and used for PDP campaign activities and personal use.

“I hereby find him guilty and convicted on count 3,” he ruled.

The trial judge also delivered judgment on count 4 which was the allegation of illegal disbursement of funds.

He said the Prosecution placed credible evidence before the court which showed some of the unlawful acts of Colonel Sambo Dasuki as the NSA while in office.

Justice Abang held, “The first defendant was desirous of repositioning the PDP and he deployed the funds for that purpose and personal use.”

Court Finds Olisa Metuh Guilty Of Money Laundering
Court Finds Olisa Metuh Guilty Of Money Laundering

He noted that the meeting wherein former President Jonathan allegedly authorised the payment was tagged a ‘security meeting’.

But the judge wondered why only the former NSA and top officials of the PDP attended the meeting, yet Metuh claimed the money was disbursed for special national assignment.

But the judge wondered why only the former NSA and top officials of the PDP attended the meeting, yet Metuh claimed the money was disbursed for special national assignment, stressing that the first defendant was not a witness of truth.

He said, “I agree with the prosecution that Metuh’s claims are tissues of lies hurriedly put in place to divert the attention of the court from prying into the disbursement of the N400 million received from the office of the NSA through an under the table agreement.

“It is a case of public funds filtering into private hands for selfish reasons.”

Justice Abang, therefore, held that the N400 million was never released for a special national assignment based on the evidence before him.

“Therefore, I find the first and second defendants guilty on count 4,” he ruled.

Justice Abang, therefore, held that the N400 million was never released for a special national assignment based on the evidence before him.

He then proceeded to give judgement on count 7 – transfer of funds to a PDP chieftain, saying he would come back to counts 5 and 6.

On the seventh count of the charges, the trial judge held that the transfer of N27.7 million to Mr Anthony Anenih for a special national assignment directly represented the illicit nature of the fund.

“I have again considered the position of the prosecution and found that the prosecution proved the transfer of N27.7 million to Chief Anthony Anenih, and I hereby find the first and second defendants guilty on count 7 and are hereby convicted,” he ruled.

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About Cynthia Charles 509 Articles
She is a prolific writer and has special interest on writing about business and opportunities. She can be contacted via [email protected]