Mompha traveled to Dubai with new passport – EFCC

Mompha traveled to Dubai with new passport - EFCC
Mompha traveled to Dubai with new passport – EFCC

Friday, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, informed an Ikeja Special Offences Court that Ismaila Mustapha (alias Mompha), a social media personality, disobeyed a court order and proceeded to Dubai using a new international passport.

EFCC has charged Mr. Mompha with N6 billion in money laundering.

The News Agency of Nigeria reported that on March 28, the court ordered Mompha to submit his international passport after reducing his bail to N25 million from N200 million.

On January 12, EFCC charged Mompha and his company, Ismalob Global Investment Ltd, with laundering six billion Naira.

The eight-count indictment includes conspiracy to launder money gained via illegal acts and laundering of such money.

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Other charges include retention of criminal proceeds, use of property obtained via illegal activity, possession of a document bearing false pretences, and failing to disclose assets.

Rotimi Oyedepo, counsel for the EFCC, informed the court on Friday that the parties had not reached a settlement, adding that the defendant hired an Emirate Airline flight to Abuja after submitting his international passport on the court’s order.

Mr. Oyedepo stated, “My lord granted bail to the defendant and directed him to present his passport.”

“The commission is not the only entity involved in this situation, and according to a reliable source, the defendant possesses a passport with the number D50084304, which was issued in Abuja in July 2021 and expires on June 30, 2031.

“According to the information provided by our partner, the defendant chartered an emirate flight from Ghana to Dubai on April 11.” This passport is not the one presented to this court, your honour.

“The defendant was not in Nigeria.” The issue now is that the defendant possesses a fresh passport, which he used to travel after my lord prohibited him from doing so,”

The defence attorney, Gboyega Oyewole, SAN, objected to the prosecution’s submission and suggested that the EFCC should write to Nigeria Immigration to confirm the assertion.

Mr. Oyewole stated, “I have discussed this matter with the prosecution, your honour.” When he called, I informed him that the N25 million was to be paid by a certain individual who was our surety.

“His account was suspended when the funds were deposited. The man called the defendant, who informed him that he had travelled to ensure his safety. The man, however, has evidence and has established that the defendant has violated the court order.

“Your Honor, the EFCC should write to Immigration to determine whether or not my client left the country.

“This is a superior court record, sir, and I recommend that an application be filed over this matter because there is a great deal of confusion.” We should document this, your Majesty.

“Allow Immigration to react if there is another passport. “There is no possibility he can enter the nation because he has already submitted his Dubai resident visa to the court,”

According to NAN, the defendant was handed a photocopy of the passport and he denied signing it.

Counsel for the EFCC subsequently pleaded with the court to pause the proceeding for ten minutes so they could confer with defence counsel.

The defence attorney then begged the judge to grant him one week to investigate the prosecution’s claim.

“We have conducted internal conversations and even spoken with the prosecutors.”

In the interest of justice, the prosecution has agreed to give me one week to confirm the facts. I must confirm the truth, my lord, said Mr. Oyewole.

The prosecution did not object to the defence counsel’s argument.

According to NAN, on June 2, the court scheduled a hearing on the defendant’s plea bargain for June 10.

The prosecution informed the court on April 6 that both sides were negotiating a plea agreement and requested sufficient time.

Judge Mojisola Dada delayed the case till June 16 for further review of the bail motion and placed the defendant in the custody of the defence attorney.

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