Alleged Fraudulent Sale of Oil Vessel: Court rejects police request to terminate case
A Magistrate Court sitting in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital on Tuesday, rejected the request by the police headquarters in Abuja, seeking the termination of an alleged fraudulent sale of a $400,000 oil vessel to Alhaji Kamoru Ibitoye Yusuf, owner of Kam Steel Holdings Limited.
SOLACEBASE reports that the court at its last sitting, remanded the defendants, Esther Shehu and David Kpanaki for allegedly conspiring to defraud Alhaji Yusuf in the matter.
They were dragged to court on a three-count charge of criminal conspiracy, cheating, screening an offender, and obstruction.
The case was then adjourned to August 31, 2023, for hearing.
However, on Tuesday, the police prosecutor, Nasir Yusuf, informed the court that “We will not be able to proceed with the application”.
He explained that the state O/C legal, Timothy Aderemi Ajibola, had directed the termination of the case based on the receipt of a letter from the force headquarters, Abuja.
“That the case should be terminated and the defendant alongside the case diary, brought to the force headquarters Abuja”, he added.
He tendered the letter from the force headquarters which was admitted as evidence by the court.
The defence counsel, Mashood Abdulkadir did not object to the decision.
He however expressed dissatisfaction with the move.
But counsel to the complainant, Ahmed Tafa rejected the move describing the development as “strange”.
But ruling on the matter, Magistrate Ibrahim Mohammed said he cannot terminate the case “given the antecedent”.
“The investigation before me has not been controverted and I am threatened by the level of applications filed by the (prosecutor).
“The case was not meant for this business today. It was instituted by a direct complaint following which the court ordered for the investigation.
“So on what basis would you order for the termination of a case that was instituted at the instance of the court in the first place. The police have not shown commitment for the court to grant their request.
“The Kwara State Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) has held that the defendants have a case to answer. If The police want to seek termination, they should go through the DPP, not the court”, Ibrahim added.
He adjourned the case to Friday, August 18, 2023, for the determination of the termination motion adding that the August 31, 2023 date still stands to determine the issue of the bail of the defendants.