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BREAKING: EFCC MOVES OKOROCHA TO COURT

Amid heavy security by its operatives, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has brought the former Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha before a Federal High Court in Abuja for arraignment over N2.9B corruption charges.

Okorocha was driven to the court premises at about 8:45 a.m. and was immediately led to the courtroom.

Dressed in his usual green coloured Agbada with a brown cap to match, the All Progressive Congress (APC) Presidential aspirant, who is wearing a pensive mood, was made to sit near a dock where his plea on the fraud charges against him would be taken this morning.

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His usual smiles and waiving of the handkerchief to admirers are completely absent in his mood in the courtroom.

Some of his family members and political associates who are in court ahead of his arrival could not get direct access to him due to heavy security mounted around him.

The aides comprising former Commissioners among others are, however, smiling around to catch a glimpse of the Senator representing Imo West in the Senate.

His lead counsel, Mr Kehinde Ogunwumiju, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, SAN, has also arrived in court with a retinue of other lawyers.

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At the time of this report, Justice Inyang Eden Ekwo who is to handle the case is being awaited in the court.

However, the court Registrar and other workers are already in their seats.

Okorocha was forcefully arrested on Tuesday in his Abuja residence by EFCC operatives as part of efforts to ensure his appearance in court today.

It will be recalled that Justice Inyang Ekwo of the Federal High Court, Abuja had on Monday, March 28, issued a threat to strike out the N2.9 billion money laundering charges against Okorocha should the Federal Government fail again to cause his appearance in court.

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The judge had threatened to throw out the charges following the inability of the Federal Government to serve charges on Okorocha as required by law.

At the March 28 proceedings, the Federal Government, for the second time through its counsel, Mr Cosmos Ugwu, had told Justice Ekwo that he has not been able to see Okorocha and serve him with the charges.

The Federal Government’s charges against Okorocha dated January 24, 2022, were signed by one A.O Ikota on behalf of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.

Okorocha, who is currently a Senator representing Imo West in the National Assembly, is to face trial alongside six others in the N2.9 billion money laundering criminal charges.

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The Senator is being put on trial by the Federal Government on 17-count charges involving criminal diversion of public funds and properties.

 

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