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EFCC docks Justice Yunusa, Rickey Tarfa’s employee for ‘bribery’
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arraigned Mohammed Yunusa, a suspended Justice of the Federal High Court, Lagos, on a five-count charge of unlawful gratification and attempt to pervert justice.
Yunusa was arraigned before Justice S. O Solebo of the Lagos State High Court alongside one Esther Agbor, an employee of Rickey Tarfa, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria.
Both persons are being accused of engaging in constant private and confidential telephone communications with Tarfa, while Yunusa was presiding over a case being handled by Tarfa.
Yunusa also allegedly agreed to receive the sum of N1.5million in order to give a decision in Tarfa’s favour.
They pleaded not guilty to the charges against them, after which Yunusa’s counsel urged the court to grant his client bail on self-recognizance, as he “is still a serving judge and has not been dismissed by the Federal government”.
Similarly, John Odubela, counsel to the second defendant, asked the court to grant her bail on self-recognizance or on liberal terms, arguing that she “is a nursing mother, who is having some health challenges”.
However, counsel to the EFCC opposed the bail application, asking the court to pick bail conditions that will compel the defendants to always attend trial.
In his ruling, the presiding Judge granted Justice Yunusa bail on self-recognizance without any financial undertaking, while ordering him not to travel outside the court’s jurisdiction without duly notifying it.
He ordered the EFCC to hand over Yunusa’s international passport to the court’s registrar.
The second defendant was also granted bail in the sum of N1 million with two sureties in like sum. The sureties must have verifiable addresses within the jurisdiction of the court and must have tax clearance evidence of three years.
The matter was adjourned to February 20, 2018, for commencement of trial.