Nigerian firms linked to ex-president guilty of money laundering

2016-11-04 07:30
Goodluck Jonathan. (File, AP)

Goodluck Jonathan. (File, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Lagos - A Nigerian court has convicted four firms allegedly used by a former aide of ex-president Goodluck Jonathan to launder $15.5m in suspected stolen funds.

Federal high court judge Babs Kuewumi said the conviction of the property and investment companies - Pluto, Seagate, Transoceanic and Avalon - on Wednesday in Lagos came after they pleaded guilty to money laundering in September.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had in July frozen the accounts of the companies and seized $15.5m while investigating Waripamo-Owei Dudafa, Jonathan's former domestic assistant, over money laundering.

But then Patience Jonathan, the wife of the former Nigerian leader, sued the EFCC, claiming ownership of the money found in several accounts in local banks.

Political foes 

Jonathan, who has not been charged over the money laundering, said she had been withdrawing the money from the accounts to pay for her overseas health expenses.

Directors of the indicted companies had in September pleaded guilty to money laundering but Dudafa and two others, lawyer Azubike Briggs and banker Adedamola Bolodeoku, pleaded not guilty.

EFCC prosecutor Rotimi Oyedepo asked the court to order that the money be forfeited to the government but that was refused by the judge, who deferred his ruling until the trial of Dudafa and the other suspects, which he adjourned to mid-December.

President Muhammadu Buhari, who defeated Jonathan in the 2015 vote, has launched a wide-ranging campaign against corruption targeting key members of the previous administration.

Former ministers, prominent party chiefs, media owners and relations of the former president are in court over similar charges.

The focus on officials from the former ruling party has led some critics to claim Buhari is using the anti-graft crackdown to silence political foes, an accusation dismissed by the government.

Read more on:    muhammadu buhari  |  jonathan  |  goodluck  |  nigeria  |  west africa

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.