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Court adjourns hearing of Babalakin's application

17 February 2014, 16:02

Ikeja -  An Ikeja High Court on Monday adjourned the hearing of an application filed by the Chairman of Bi-Courtney Ltd., Wale Babalakin, to March 14.

Babalakin, in the application filed before Justice Lateef Lawal-Akapo, asked the court to dismiss the N4.7 billion fraud charge preferred against him and four others.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had charged Babalakin and the other defendants to court.

They are facing a 27-count charge of conspiracy, retention of proceeds of a criminal conduct and corruptly conferring benefit on account of public action.

Babalakin’s co-defendants; Alex Okoh, Stabilini Visioni Ltd., Bi-Courtney Ltd. and Renix Nigeria Ltd, had also filed similar applications challenging the court's jurisdiction to entertain the charges.

They also challenged the competency of the charges, arguing that the EFCC lacked the power to prosecute them before a state high court without a valid fiat.

During Monday's proceedings, the EFCC counsel, Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), told the court that he sprained his ankle last week, in an accident.

Jacobs said he could not undertake the business of the day (hearing of arguments on the applications), due to the unfortunate incident.

He, therefore, prayed the court for an adjournment.

On his part, Babalakin's counsel, Dr Abiodun Layonu (SAN), urged the court to allow the defence to adopt their written addresses in support of the applications.

After listening to the requests, the judge held that he was inclined to grant the adjournment on the basis of Jacobs' injury.

"If you have an injury just on your fingertip, it will affect the whole of your system completely," Lawal-Akapo said.

He, therefore, adjourned the case till March 14.

-  NAN

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