FG re-arraigns businessman on 12 counts over forgery, criminal conspiracy

FG re-arraigns businessman on 12 counts over forgery, criminal conspiracy
Federal High Court

The Federal Government on Wednesday re-arraigned a businessman, Paul Ozigbu, at the Federal High Court in Abuja over charges bordering on forgery, criminal conspiracy and illegal conversion of property.

Ozigbu was re-arraigned before Justice Donatus Okorowo, following the transfer of Justice Okon Abang who was handling the matter to another division of the Federal High Court.

Following the re-arraignment, counsel to Ozigbu, Mr Hope Ejiofor informed the judge,  Justice Okorowo that his client had been admitted to bail by Justice Abang and that he had perfected the bail conditions.
Ejiofor prayed the court to allow his client to continue enjoying the previous bail as granted by Justice Abang.
The judge granted the prayer since it was not opposed by the prosecuting counsel,  Mr J. Nwadike.
Justice Okorowo adjourned the matter until October 18 for trial.
In the 12-count charge as read to the defendant for the second time, he was accused of conniving with others at large to forge a Corporate Affairs  Commission document by forging the signature of late Mr Hillary Ozigbu.
He allegedly used the document to effect the change of directors of the company, known as Ozigbu Engineering Company Limited.
He was also alleged to have illegally converted the property and assets of the late Hillary Ozigbu within Nigeria and overseas to himself.
In one of the counts, he was said to have converted 67 hecters of land in Imo and another 109 hecters of land at Eleme, Rivers to himself, thereby denying others their legitimate share of their father's property.
Ozigbu was also accused of using a forged power of attorney to obtain the sum of N40 million and to have, in 2014, used the forged document to obtain a property worth N5 billion said to belong to Ozigbu Engineering Limited.
In another count, he allegedly obtained a piece of heavy duty equipment worth N5 billion belonging to the late father's company.

The Police, the prosecuting agency had in 2020, arraigned Ozigbu for forging Corporate Affairs Commission documents, conversion of the family property into personal use amongst other charges.

In the suit marked FHC/ABJ/CR/239/2020, Ozigbu was accused alongside Ngozi Ozigbu and David Ozigbu to have at different times obtained various sums of money totalling N10.40 billion with fraudulent documents.

The defendant,  however, pleaded not guilty to all charges and was admitted to bail in the sum of N20 million with a surety in like sum.

The bail conditions included that the surety must be resident in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and own landed property.


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