A Kwara State High Court, sitting in Ilorin, on Wednesday, November 13, 2019 refused an application brought by former member of the Kwara State House of Assembly, Muhammed Adebayo, seeking to terminate a six-count charge, bordering on land fraud and obtaining money under false pretence brought against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Adebayo was arraigned on August 1, 2019 by the Ilorin Zonal Office of the Commission before Justice Sikiru Oyinloye of the State High Court.
At the resumed hearing on the matter today, defence counsel, I. Abdul-Azeez applied that the matter be terminated by the court due to the non-appearance of the prosecution counsel, which Justice Oyinloye turned down on the basis that the ground for the application was not enough to terminate the criminal charges.
"In the interest of justice and fair hearing, the charges will not be terminated on the basis of prosecution counsel’s absence,” the judge said.
While adding that a hearing notice should be served on the prosecution counsel, Justice Oyinloye adjourned the matter until December 11, 2019 for continuation of trial.
One of the charges against the defendant reads: “That you, Mohammed Adebayo, sometime in July 2013 in Ilorin, within the jurisdiction of this honourable court, with intent to defraud obtained the sum of N950,000 from one Mary Omowunmi Kolade on the false pretence that three plots of land (situated at Malete, Moro Local Government Area of Kwara State) which you sold to her belonged to you, a representation you knew to be false and punishable under Section 1 of the Advance Fee Fraud and other fraud related offences.”
He pleaded not guilty to all the charges, setting the stage for his trial.