FG Withdraws Corruption Charges Against Supreme Court Officials

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The office of the Attorney General of the Federation has withdrawn the charges brought against three officials of the Supreme Court, including the Chief Registrar, Ahmed Saleh.

Saleh and two others, Muhammed Sheriff and Rilwanu Lawal, Director of Finance and Chief Accountant of the Supreme Court respectively, were initially charged with conspiracy, criminal breach of trust and accepting gratification as public officers.

But attempts to arraign the three defendants had failed on more than one occasion.

When the case came up on Tuesday at the FCT high court, prosecution counsel, Hajara Yusuf, informed the court that she has been directed by the AGF to discontinue with the case.

“My lord, I have been mandated by the office of the Attorney General of the Federation to withdraw the charges against the three persons,” Yusuf told trial judge Abba-Bello Muhammed.

Justice Muhammed obliged the prosecution and ordered the withdrawal of the charges.

The three senior Supreme Court officials were alleged to have misappropriated the sum of N2.2 billion belonging to the Supreme Court between 2009 and 2016.

They were also alleged to have obtained gratification totaling N80 million from people contrary to the ICPC Act.

Meanwhile the office of the AGF said it withdrew the charges due to the fact that the accused persons had entered into a plea bargain with the prosecution.






     

     

    This was made known by Salihu Isah, spokesman for the AGF, Abubakar Malami, who spoke to journalists in Abuja on Tuesday.

    “You know that it is not out of place to withdraw a matter, even after it has been brought to court,” Salihu said.

    “The withdrawal is based on information provided during plea-bargain that has proven helpful for the investigation of other judges under examination.”

    The federal government had on numerous occasions maintained that return of looted funds may not necessarily exempt an accused person from facing further prosecution.

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