$140,000 fraud allegations: Court discharges Atiku’s son-in-law, Babalele

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A Federal High Court in Ikoyi, Lagos State, on Monday discharged a son-in-law to former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, Abdullahi Babalele, of a two-count charge of laundering $140,000.

The judge, Justice Chukwujekwu Aneke, discharged the accused, who was arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on grounds that the anti-graft body filed a suit at the wrong venue.

Aneke held that the charge against Babalele ought not to have been filed in Lagos State when the alleged offence was said to have been committed in Abeokuta, Ogun State.

He relied on the Supreme Court’s decision in a case between the EFCC and Mohammed Dele Belgore on territorial jurisdiction.

Recall that Babalele was arraigned in 2018 and then re-arraigned on October 8, 2019.

The EFCC accused Babalele of giving a former Nigeria’s President, Olusegun Obasanjo, $140,000 on the instruction of Abubakar, who was vying for the office of president in 2019.

Babalele, however, pleaded not guilty on each occasion.

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