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Skye Bank’s ex-chair, Ayeni, arraigned for money laundering, granted N50m bail

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Monday arraigned a former Chairman of the defunct Skye Bank Plc ( now Polaris Bank ) , Mr Tunde Ayeni, before the Federal High Court in Abuja on money laundering charges involving the sums of N 4 . 75 bn and $ 5 m .
Ayeni was arraigned alongside a former Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the bank , Mr Timothy Oguntayo .
The duo were accused in the eight counts preferred against them of illegally delivering the cumulative sums of the bank ’ s N 4 . 75 bn and $ 5 m to Ayeni between 2014 and 2015 in violation of various provisions of the money laundering law .
They both pleaded not guilty when the eight counts were read to them before Justice Nnamdi Dimgba on Monday.
Ayeni is named in all the eight counts , while Oguntayo is named in only the first count .
The first count has to do with alleged conspiracy between the two men to cause the cumulative sums of N 4 . 75bn and $ 5 m allegedly belonging to the bank to be illegally delivered to Ayeni in cash.
The money was said to have been allegedly delivered to Ayeni in tranches at different times in violation of Section 1 ( a) of the Money Laundering ( Prohibition ) Act 2011 ( as amended ) read together with Section 18 ( a) of the same law and punishable under Section 16( 2 ) ( b) of the law .
In another leg of the allegations contained in counts 2 to 8 , in which only the name of Ayeni featured , the prosecution gave a breakdown of how the bank ’ s ex - chairman allegedly received the total sums of N 4 . 75 bn and $ 5 m from staff of the bank without going through financial institution in violation of Section 1 ( a) of the Money Laundering ( Prohibition ) Act 2011 ( as amended ) .
According to the prosecution , Ayeni received from staff of the defunct bank , the cash sums of N 1 bn on January 23 , 2014 ; $ 5 m sometimes in September 2014 ; N 1 bn on November 24, 2014 ; N 1 bn on December 1 , 2014 ; N1 bn on January 23 , 2015 ; N 500 m on February 18 , 2015 , and N 250 m on November 20 , 2015 .
The various alleged acts of the defendants , as captured in the said counts 2 to 8 , were said to be punishable under Section 16 ( 1 ) ( d ) read together with Section 16 ( 2 ) ( b ) of the law .
They both pleaded not guilty to the allegations of fraud contained in the eight counts filed against them by the EFCC.
Justice Dimgba , upon plea by the defence lawyers, granted bail to the defendants in the sum of N 50m each . The defence lawyers are Chief Wole Olanipekun ( SAN ) and Mr Dele Adesina ( SAN ) for Ayeni and Tola Oshobi ( SAN ) for Oguntayo ,
The judge gave the defendants 36 hours to meet the bail conditions failing which they would be remanded in Kuje Prisons in Abuja pending when they would fulfil them .
As part of the conditions, the defendants were also ordered to present two sureties who must either be a civil servant not less than the rank of an Assistant Director in any federal establishment or private business persons with landed properties in the Abuja metropolis .
They are also , to , among other conditions, deposit their passports with the court and they would not be allowed to travel outside the country without an express permission of the court .
The judge fixed February 13 and 14 , 2019 for trial .
Skye Bank’s ex-chair, Ayeni, arraigned for money laundering, granted N50m bail Skye Bank’s ex-chair, Ayeni, arraigned for money laundering, granted N50m bail Reviewed by Peter Hosea on December 18, 2018 Rating: 5

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