Justice Oluwatoyin Ipaye of the Lagos High Court, Ikeja, has granted the request by a former Court Registrar, Oluronke Rosulu, who is standing trial alongside Fred Ajudua in the $8.4m scam, to be separated from the charge.
Rosulu was charged together with Ajudua, for allegedly helping him to defraud General Ishaya Bamaiyi (retd) of the sum of $8.4million. They were arraigned on a 14-count charge bordering on conspiracy to obtain money by false pretences.
At the resumption of the trial on Thursday, Rosulu, through her counsel, Bamidele Ogundele, filed an application seeking to separate the charges against her from those of Ajudua. Ogundele told the court that, he filed the application to seek accelerated trial for his client who had been suspended by the Lagos State Judicial Service Commission and would want the matter determined before her retirement in 2015.
Both counsel to Ajudua, Olalekan Ojo and counsel to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Seidu Atteh opposed the second defendant’s application. Ojo told the court that the Court of Appeal, Lagos, has reserved ruling on the appeal Ajudua placed before it, seeking an order of the court to quash the charges preferred against him.
Justice Ipaye however, granted the application of the second defendant on the ground that she has a right to separate hearing and that she had made case for accelerated hearing.
“Considering the time taken for the eventual arraignment of the first defendant and his various pending applications before the court and Lagos Court of Appeal, it would amount to injustice not to grant the second defendant a separate trial”, he said.
Justice Ipaye ordered the prosecution counsel to prepare a fresh charge against her and adjourned the matter to November 27, 2014.
Ajudua allegedly defrauded a former Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Ishaya Bamaiyi (retd), of $8.4 million between November 2004 and June 2005, while both were in prison custody in Lagos.
In the amended charges, Mrs Oluronke Rosulu, a court registrar with Justice Olubunmi Oyewole of the Lagos High Court, as he then was, is accused of helping Ajudua to con the retired army chief.