Abuja – The Federal Government has rearraingned Chief Raymond Dokpesi and his company, DAAR Investment Company Ltd on a 7-count amended charge.
Dokpesi and DAAR Ltd are being prosecuted for allegedly receiving a whooping N2.1billion from the Office of the National Security Adviser without executing any contract.
He was initially arraigned on December 9, 2015 before Justice Gabriel Kolawole on a 6-count charge bordering on money laundering, breach of public trust and procurement fraud.
After the matter was transferred to Justice John Tsoho of the Federal High Court Abuja, the defendants were re-arraingned on February 17, 2016 over allegations of money laundering and breach of public trust.
In the on going criminal trial, the prosecution has called 12 witnesses in a bid to prove its case against the defendants.
But when the matter came up on Wednesday for the defence counsel, Chief Kanu Agabi SAN to cross examine PW12, the prosecution counsel, Oluwaleke Atolagbe informed the court that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission had filed an amended charge at the registry.
“My lord, the case is for continuation of trial and we have our witness in court. However, it will be appropriate to inform the court that we have filed an amended charge, which is not in the court’s record, Atolagbe said.
Taken aback by Atolagbe’s statement, Justice Tsoho rheotorically asked him if he knew the implication of an amended charge.
Reacting, Agabi told the court that the whole essence of the prosecution serving them the amended charge in court this morning was to push the defence to say they are not ready.
“The usual thing is for the prosecution to be desperate to prosecute their case, but we are the ones anxious and desperate to defend” Agabi stated.
The matter was stood down for the court to check if it can get the amended charge from the registry.
However, at a resumed sitting, the prosecution, pursuant to Section 218(2) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015, applied for the charge to be endorsed.
The court granted his request in accordance with Section 216 of ACJA, and the charge was endorsed by the prosecution counsel.
Consequently, the charge was read to Dokpesi, but he pleaded not guilty.