The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has arraigned the trio of Segun Osho, Roland Alozie and Abass Kolawole before Justice M.O Opara of the Rivers State High Court, Port-Harcourt on a three-count charge of conspiracy, stealing and fraudulent conversion of N9, 554, 286. 00.
Osho and Alozie, both staff of Access Bank Plc, Moscow Road, Port Harcourt, were alleged to have conspired to convert an EcoBank Manager’s cheque for N9, 554, 286 issued by Rockson Engineering Company Limited as tax remittance in favour of Rivers State Board of Internal Revenue.
The said cheque was said to have been then passed on to Kolawole who allegedly attempted to pay it into his personal account at Ecobank.
One of the charges read: “You, Segun Osho, Rowland Alozie on or about the 26th of May, 2014 at Port Harcourt in the Port Harcourt Judicial Division of the High Court of Rivers State did conspire with one Chukwudi and Tope Balogun, now at large to commit felony to wit: Stealing of Ecobank Manager’s cheque with cheque No. 19092084 valued Nine Million, Five Hundred and Fifty-Four Thousand, Two Hundred and Eighty Six Naira (N9, 554, 286. 00) issued in favour of Rivers State Internal Revenue Board by Rockson Engineering as Tax revenue and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under section 516 (a) of the Criminal Code law Cap 37 Laws of Rivers State of Nigeria 1999”.
Another charge read: “You Abass Kolawole on or about the 26th of May, 2014 at Western Avenue Branch of Ecobank, Surulere within the Judicial Division of the Lagos State and triable in the Port Harcourt Judicial Division of the Rivers State High Court fraudulently stole the sum of Nine Million, Five Hundred and Fifty Four Thousand, Two Hundred and Eighty Six Naira (N9, 554, 286, 00) by means of an Ecobank Manager’s cheque being issued in favour of Rivers State Internal Revenue Board by Rockson Engineering as Tax Revenue and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 383 (1) (a) and punishable under section 390 (9) of the Criminal Code law Cap 37 Laws of Rivers State of Nigeria 1999.
The accused persons pleaded not guilty to the charges.
In view of their pleas, prosecution counsel M.T Iko, applied for a date to commence trial and asked that the defendants be remanded in prison custody. However, counsels to the first and second defendants, King Gabriel and R.O Agbagbuo, opposed the remand request and asked the court to grant the accused bail.
Justice Opara adjourned the matter to May 4, 2016 for argument on their bail applications.