EFCC Opposes Statement of Own Witness in P&ID Scam

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Thursday kicked against the admission of the statement of its own witness in the trial of a British citizen, James Nolan who is allegedly linked with the Process and Industrial Development (P&ID) contract scam.

The witness, Agunbiade Adeseye, had made a statement in writing to the EFCC in which he chronicled how about eight accounts linked to the controversial oil and gas supply contract was opened in 2006 and operated till date before the sponsors of the company were arrested in connection with the failed oil and gas deal.

Mr Adeseye, who was led in evidence by lawyer to the EFCC, Iheanacho Ekele, had told the court how huge amounts in dollars were transferred in batches from P&ID accounts overseas into its subsidiaries’ accounts in Nigeria through GTB.

The witness also told the court how huge sums running into millions of Naira were also transferred from one of the subsidiaries to another, especially Goidel Resources Nigeria Limited and ICIL Nigeria Limited.

There was, however, a disagreement at the Federal High Court, Abuja, during cross examination by counsel to the defendants, Paul Erokoro (SAN), when the witness admitted that there was nothing unusual in foreign companies transferring money to their subsidiaries in Nigeria legally.

The witness further told the trial judge, Okon Abang that his bank would not have accepted the transfer of the foreign currency from outside the country if it were not for legitimate purposes.

Erokoro, who cross-examined the witness based on his written witness statement to EFCC applied to tender it as exhibits to assist the court in arriving at a just conclusion.

However, the request was vehemently opposed by the EFCC’s counsel, who stated that the defence counsel did not lay a foundation for admission of the statement.

Justice Abang, however, fixed December 6 for ruling on the admissibility or otherwise of the statement and for continuation of the trial.

Earlier, the EFCC had rearranged Mr Nolan on 32 amended charges.

In the 32 amended charges, the defendants were accused of money laundering, tax evasion and failure to disclose their activities to the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment in line with the Money Laundering Act.


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