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Court acquits Oronsaye of N190m fraud charge

Court acquits Oronsaye of N190m fraud charge

A Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court has discharged former Head of Civil Service of the Federation, Mr. Steve Oronsaye, of the seven-count charge of fraud preferred against him by the Federal Government.
The government had filed the charges against Oronsaye who was also the Chairman, Presi­dential Committee on Financial Action Task Force, set up by former President Goodluck Jon­athan.
The charges bothered on alleged breach of trust and diversion of N190 million meant for the committee.
Ruling on the no-case-submission filed by the defendant, the trial judge, Justice Olasumbo Goodluck, held that the prosecution failed to es­tablish a prima facie case against the defendant that can warrant the court to order him to enter into defence.
The judge further held that there was contra­dictory evidence by the prosecution witnesses on whether Orosanye was still the head of service as at the time he chaired the committee.
“The court seems to discredit the evidence, suffice it to say that there is no evidence linking the accused with the statutory ele­ment and ingredients of the offence with which he is charged.
“The trial court must as a matter of law dis­charged the defendant because it has no busi­ness scouting for evi­dence that is nowhere to be found.
“I have looked through the case and I am unable to see any justification for this case. The defendant is hereby discharged,” the court held.
At the trial stage, the prosecution had called six witnesses who testi­fied against the defen­dant.
After the prosecution closed its case, the de­fendant filed a no-case-submission.
He premised his ap­plication on the ground that the prosecution had no case against him.-The Authority

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