The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has arraigned two British nationals, James Richard Nolan and Adam Quinn (at large), before Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court, Abuja for their alleged complicity in the controversial $9.6bn arbitral award to Process and Industrial Development Limited by a United Kingdom commercial court.
The defendants, according to a press release by Wilson Uwujaren, Head, Media & Publicity, were both directors of Goidel Resources Limited, a Designated Non-Financial Institution (DNFI) and ICIL Limited, and were docked on a 16 count- charge bordering on money laundering.
Count one of the charges read: “That you James Richard Nolan and Adam Quinn(at large), sometime in December 2013 in Abuja, within the jurisdiction of this honorable court, being Directors of Goidel Resources Limited, a Designated Non-Financial Institution(“DNFI”) aided the said Company in failing to comply in the requirement of submitting to the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investments a declaration of the activities as specified under Section 5 (1)(a) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act, 2011 as amended and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 18(a) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act, 2011 as amended and punishable under Section 16 (2b) of the same Act”.
Another count reads: “That you Goidel Resources Limited, sometime in February 2014, at Abuja within the jurisdiction of this Federal High Court being a Designated Non-Financial Institution (“DNFI”) failed to report in writing to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission a single lodgment of the sum of $125,000 ( One Hundred and Twenty Five Thousand, Dollar only), in your account number 0154696732 domiciled in Guaranty Trust Bank Plc as specified under Section 10(1b) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act, 2011 as amended and you thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 16(2b) of the same Act.”
After the charges were read to them, the defendants pleaded ‘not guilty’ to the charges, while Justice Abang struck out count nine of the charge on the grounds that “a court of law has no jurisdiction to entertain a charge against a non-registered person”.
The prosecuting counsel, Bala Sanga asked the court for a trial date and an order to remand the defendants in prison custody.
However, defence counsel, Okwudili Anozie moved an oral application for the bail of his clients. Sanga objected to the oral bail application.
“We object to the oral application of the defendant. We would be requesting an affidavit showing cause, why the bail should be granted”, he said.
After hearing argument of counsel, Justice Abang refused the oral application for the bail of the defendants and adjourned to November 20 and 21, 2019, for commencement of trial.
He ordered the remand of the defendants in prison custody, pending the consideration of their bail applications.