We sold N8m vehicle to Justice Ademola’s son, witness testifies
The trial of the Federal High Court judge, Justice Adeniyi Ademola, his wife, Olubowale, an Abuja-based Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Joe Agi and others began yesterday at the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court, with the first prosecution witness testifying before Justice Jude Okeke.
The Federal Government is arraigning the accused persons on a 16-count charge bordering on payment and receipt of gratification.
The witness and sales consultant with Coscharis Motors Limited, Ifeoma Ofornagolu, told the court that she handled the sales of BMW 320i series in January 2015 to Justice Ademola’s son, Ademide. According to her, the car was sold to him at the cost of N8 million.
Her words: “During the close of sales with Ademide, he requested that I should ‘attention’ Joe Agi in respect of the BMW 320i series – that I should issue a profoma invoice in the name of Joe Agi.”
She stated that the N8 million and the Valued Added Tax (VAT) of N400,000 were settled by Agi through an electronic transfer.
The witness noted that after the payment, she accompanied the company’s driver in delivering the car to Ademide at his Lekki Phase 1, Lagos residence, adding that an invoice bearing BR-04258 was eventually issued in favour of Ademide Ademola.
The witness, however, failed to link the judge with the purchase and receipt of the vehicle as alleged in the charge.
The prosecution had in the 12th count claimed that the jurist received from Agi the said car valued at N8.5 million through his son, Ademide as gratification in the exercise of his official function as a judge.
Afterwards, the prosecution counsel, Segun Jegede, sought to tender the invoice, receipt and the email print-out to which the quotation was sent as evidence.
While the counsel to Justice Ademola, the first defendant, Dr. Onyechi Ikpeazu (SAN) did not oppose their total admissibility, he however, opposed the admission of the email on the ground that it was sent from an uncertified iPad.
He cited Section 84 of the Evidence Act to back his opposition.
Both lawyers to the second and the third defendants, Roberts Clarke (SAN) and Jeff Njikonye, aligned themselves with Ikpeazu’s position.
Jegede subsequently withdrew the documents, leaving behind the invoice and the receipt which were later admitted in evidence and marked exhibit A.
Also to testify is the office of the Directorate of State Security Service (DSS), which conducted investigation on the house of Justice Ademola in October last year.
Consequently, the court adjourned till today for continuation of trial.
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