Federal High Court registrar jailed for N80m fraud ‎


A Kaduna Federal High Court presided over by Justice P. Mallong ‎has sentenced a former Registrar of the court, Mr Joseph Udoh to four years imprisonment for laundering the sum of N80 million.

‎This was disclosed in a statement issued by spokesman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission,  (ICPC), ‎Azuka Ogugua‎, on Thursday.‎

‎Udoh and his wife, Grace, were in December 2019 arraigned by the ICPC for alleged misappropriation of N80m deposited in the court by a litigant.

The convict reportedly issued cheques in the name of his wife, also a staff member of the Federal High Court in Abuja, and used the money to acquire properties in some major cities across the country.

Based on a plea bargain agreement entered with the convict, the charges against him were amended to four counts and those against his wife dropped.

He pleaded guilty to the charges, after which prosecution counsel, Shehu Yahaya, urged the court to convict and sentence him according to the terms of the plea bargain agreement as provided in section 270(10) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015.

The statement added, “The presiding judge, Justice Mallong convicted and sentenced Mr Udoh to 12 months imprisonment on each count, but to run concurrently from the date of his arraignment, which was from 12th December, 2019.‎

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“The court also ruled that all properties seized by ICPC in the course of investigation, as listed in the schedule of the plea bargain agreement be forfeited to the Commission, and be sold with the proceeds given to the victims of the crime.‎

“In addition, a lien would be placed on the convict’s retirement benefits and/or pension savings for any balance still outstanding against the defendant after the sale of the forfeited properties.

“In the event any outstanding sum and balance payment by the convict remain unpaid, same is to be paid by instalments as agreed by the complainant and the convict in accordance with section 429 of the ACJA, 2015.”‎

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