Senator Peter Nwaoboshi, representing Delta North Senatorial District at the National Assembly, has been sentenced to seven years imprisonment for money laundering.
The Court of Appeal, sitting in Lagos, on Friday ordered that Nwaoboshi‘s two companies, Golden Touch Construction Project Ltd and Suiming Electrical Ltd, be wound up in line with Section 22 of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act 2021.
According to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, the court ruling was delivered after the anti-graft agency challenged the judgment of Justice Chukwujekwu Aneke of the Federal High Court, which discharged and acquitted the defendants on two counts of fraud and money laundering.
EFCC had arraigned the three defendants over the acquisition of a property named Guinea House, Marine Road, in Apapa, Lagos, for N805 million.
The anti-graft agency claimed N322 million transferred by Suiming Electrical Ltd on behalf of Nwaoboshi and Golden Touch Construction Project Ltd to the vendor as part of the payment – was alleged to be part of the fraud proceeds.
In his judgement, Justice Aneke said the prosecutor’s evidence “proved that the third defendant obtained a loan of N1.2 billion from Zenith Bank for purchase of additional equipment and as the provision of working capital”.
“It also proved that the loan of N1.2 billion together with interest of N24 million was properly granted to the third. Nothing else was proved by the complainant or prosecutor in this case,” the EFCC quoted the judge as saying in a statement.
The judge also claimed that a fatal blow was dealt with the prosecution’s case by its failure to call officials of Sterling Bank “to testify and probably tender exhibits F and F10. Consequently, he was discharged and acquitted the defendants”.
However, the Court of Appeal on Friday held that the trial judge erred in dismissing the charges against the respondents.
“The court said the prosecution had proved the ingredients of the offence and consequently found the defendants guilty as charged,” EFCC said.