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EFCC Arraigns Lagos Businessman For Defrauding GTB N125m

Oluwasina Phillip

Andrew Warri has been arraigned by the Lagos Zonal Office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, for allegedly defrauding Guaranty Trust Bank Plc of the sum of N125,000,000.

According to the Commission, Warri was arraigned before Justice Sherifah Solebo of the Special Offences Court sitting in Ikeja, Lagos on a seven-count charge bordering on stealing, obtaining by false pretense and issuance of dud cheques.

Warri was arraigned alongside two companies: A.M. Projects Consultancy Limited and Ranez Medical Consultancy Limited.

The charge sheet reads; “Andrew Warri, A.M. Projects Consultancy Limited, sometime in May 2012 in Lagos, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, with intent to defraud, fraudulently obtained the sum of N125,000,000 from Guaranty Trust Bank Plc under the guise that the proceeds of the Rural Health Care and Referral contract with Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) will be domiciled in your account with Guaranty Trust Bank, the said pretense you knew, or ought to have known is false.”

Another count reads: “Andrew Warri, Ranez Medical Consultancy Limited, on or about 28th October 2018 in Lagos, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, issued a Zenith Bank cheque for the sum of N10,000,000 payable to A.M. Projects Consultancy Limited, in favour of Guaranty Trust Bank, which upon presentation for payment was dishonoured on the grounds that no sufficient funds were standing to your credit.”

He pleaded “not guilty” to the charges.

The counsel for Warri, Nelson Imoh informed the Court that the bail application for his client was before the Court.

However, the prosecuting counsel, Franklin Ofoma, while opposing the application for bail, argued that the defendant was a flight risk, as he had resisted when operatives of the EFCC went to his office to effect his arrest.

Ofoma prayed the Court for a date for commencement of trial, as the prosecution was ready to prove its case against the defendants.

“His arrest was aborted and the EFCC had to watch list the defendant with the DSS, Immigrations, Customs and other local and international law enforcement agencies, just to ensure his attendance,” he said.

According to Ofoma, the defendant was about to take off to the United States, but in the process, he was informed that he could not travel as he was on a watch list.

Justice Solebo ordered that the defendant be remanded at the Correctional facility and adjourned the case till July 1, 2021.

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