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Thursday, 21 July 2016

AFRAID GOING TO JAIL! Metuh, Amosu, Umar Begged EFCC

Olisa Metuh facing trial
Olisa Metuh, Adeshola Amosu and Mohammed Dikko Umar are eager to refund their “loot”

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) reportedly got requests from three people on trial for alleged corruption to return their “loot” in exchange for freedom.

The three people are Olisa Metuh, the former national publicity secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), ex-chiefs of air staff Air Marshals Adeshola Amosu and Mohammed Dikko Umar.

An EFCC source said they want to return the loot to avoid going to jail, The Nation reports.

The source said: “We have formally received letters of plea bargain from three accused persons, Metuh, Umar and Amosu and we are studying their terms.

“We may enter into a plea bargain with the accused persons if it will serve the public interest. The interest is getting back the stolen funds. If they can fulfill this condition (public interest), we may accept their offers.”

However, the source did not disclose the details of the request from the accused persons.
Metuh is standing trial for allegedly receiving N400 million from the former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki. The money is believed to be part of the $2.1 billion arms deal fund that was allegedly diverted.

Umar is facing a seven-count charge bordering on money laundering, criminal breach of trust and corruption of about N9.7billion.

Amosu is facing 26-count of stealing about N50 billion alongside Air Vice marshal (AVM) Jacob Adigun and Air Commodore Gbadebo Olugbenga.

Report has it that the anti-graft agency has struck an agreement with the police and other security agencies to protect key witnesses in the $2.1 billion arms deal probe, following threats from unknown quarters.

Those affected are witnesses against Dasuki, ex-Chief of Defence Staff Air Chief Marshal Alex Badeh, and ex-Chiefs of Air Staff Amosu and Umar as well as Metuh.

The commission is said to be concerned that the witnesses have become “vulnerable,” since the list of all the witnesses has been attached to charge sheets in courts in Abuja and Lagos.

A source, who spoke in confidence, said: “But some of these witnesses have been receiving threats and have come under pressure to either back out of the cases or frustrate the EFCC. These witnesses have chosen to be patriotic to serve the nation by testifying in courts.

“This was why at a stage, we approached the court to allow some of these witnesses to testify in camera.

“While we are looking into the threats, we have decided to be proactive by protecting these key witnesses, including Air Commodore Salisu Yushau, who has been testifying against Badeh.”

Most of the witnesses include account officers, directors of finance and accounts, procurement officers, serving and retired military and security personnel; bank officials and personal aides.

Metuh had been arrested, detained and later released. Following his travails, he had through his lawyer Onyechi Ikpeazu issued a statement reasserting his intention to return the funds in its entirety to signify his support for President Muhammadu Buhari’s anti-corruption war.

According to his lawyer, Metuh said he had no knowledge of the source of the money and had every cause to believe that the money was from the ex-President Goodluck Jonathan to whom he made presentation, received directives and rendered report and accounts accordingly

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