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Pension scam: Accused attacks journalist

10 April 2013, 16:30

Abuja - An accused in the N32.8 billion pension scam,  Veronica Onyegbula, who was arraigned before an FCT High Court, on Wednesday turned violent and attacked a photo journalist at the court premises.

Onyegbula, who was arraigned along side, Esai Dangabar, Atiku Abubakar, Ahmed Wada, Sani Zira, Uzoma Attang, Christian Madubuke and John Yusuf, had earlier pleaded not guilty to an 18-count charge.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Onyegbula attacked the journalist, who tried to get her photograph while she was stepping out of the court with her face covered with a wrapper.

NAN also reports that the suspect used one of her hands to hit the photo-journalist.

At the resumed sitting, the prosecuting counsel, Mr Rotimi Jacob (SAN), told the court of the amended charges for the accused persons.

The EFCC had alleged that the accused persons conspired and sequentially withdrew money from the Police Pension Fund (PPF) in an account domiciled at First Bank of Nigeria and shared it amongst themselves.

He said that one of the accused, Inuwa Wada, collected N18 million from Unity Bank Plc, as his reward for retaining the Police Pension Account with the bank.

He also maintained that the fraud was perpetuated between January 2009 and June 2011.

He said that their offences, which bordered on conspiracy, fraud and criminal breach of trust, was punishable under Section 97, 315, 115 (ii), 119 and 309 of the Penal Code Act Cap. 532, Laws of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja,  2007.

Rotimi told the court that he had no objection to their bail application and pleaded with the court for a short adjournment to commence trial on the matter.

Justice Hussieni Baba-Yusuf, granted the plea and adjourned the matter to May 4, for the commencement of the trial.

He said that the accused still maintained their bail terms.



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