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You can’t try me here, Nigerian ex-governor tells Court in N4 billion fraud case

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Willie Obiano, former Governor of Anambra state, has filed an application at the Federal High Court Abuja, seeking to quash nine-count money laundering charges filed against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.

Specifically, Obiano, through his lawyer, Onyechi Ikpeazu SAN, based his application on the ground that the court lacked the jurisdiction to hear the criminal charge filed against him.

When the matter came up on Monday, Sylvanus Tahir SAN, representing the EFCC, informed the court that had three witnesses to call against the former governor.

But Ikpeazu interjected and informed the trial judge, Justice Inyang Ekwo, that he filed an application challenging the jurisdiction of the court to hear the suit instituted by the EFCC.

The defendant’s lawyer told the court to exercise its discretion to determine the motion first before commencement of trial.

It was Ikpeazu’s contention that Obiano be tried before a High Court in Anambra state, in the interest of justice, rather than Abuja.

However, the EFCC lawyer confirmed to the court that he was served with the said motion on notice in the open court.

“This is a blatant waste of time,” Tahir stated, but Justice Ekwo cut him short by saying the court should be in a better position to decide on the motion.

Subsequently, lawyers agreed to return on March 7, to exchange processes in respect of the motion on notice.

“Case adjourned to March 7, for motion of notice of the defendant challenging jurisdiction of the court to hear the matter” Justice Ekwo held.

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