23 May 2015, Lagos -Abdullahi, son of late prominent businessman, Alhaji Abdullazeez Arisekola-Alao, and two other oil marketers (Opeyemi Ajuyah and Olanrewaju Olalusi) were yesterday re-arraigned before an Ikeja High Court over allegation of N1.1 billion fuel subsidy fraud.
In an amended eight count charge, the trio were re-arraigned alongside their companies, Majope Investment Limited and Axenergy Limited, by The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
The commission also accused all the defendants of forging a bill of landing, cargo manifest and other documents utilised to have facilitated the fraud.
During yesterday’s proceeding, lawyer to the anti-graft agency, Seidu Atteh, intimated the presiding judge, Justice Lateefa Okunnu, that the commission had amended the charges.
He subsequently prayed the court to order the defendants to retake their pleas, just as he insisted that the trio fraudulently obtained N1bn from the Federal Government (FG) between January 2011 and April 2012.
According to Atteh, the money (N1.1 billion) was for subsidy payments from the Petroleum Support Fund for the purported importation of 15 million litres of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS).
EFCC lawyer insisted that the offences contravene Sections 1(3) of the Advanced Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act of 2006. The offence is also said to violate Sections 363(a) and 364 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2011. However, when the charge was read to the defendants, they pleaded not guilty to the charge.