A federal High Court sitting in Lagos on Tuesday, convicted Simon Ademola Akinteye, the former Managing Director of the defunct Integrated Microfinance Bank Limited, over $166.9million fraud.
The court, presided over by Justice Cecilia Mojisola Olatoregun, convicted Akinteye, after finding him guilty of all the nine counts in the charge bordering on reckless granting of loans without collateral, levelled against him by the Department of Public Prosecution (DPP), Federal Ministry of Justice.
The court, however, discharged and acquitted his deputy, Gabriel Adepoju, who was charged on a one-count charge of unlawful diversion of N22.250million to a printing company named Gad Press Limited.
Justice Olatoregun adjourned till February 21, for the sentencing of the former bank MD.
The DPP, in a charged marked FHC/L/234c/16, alleged that the two bank chiefs recklessly, without collateral, approved credit facilities running into $166million, and N33.250million to themselves and one Mrs. Temitope Muhammed Imam.
In the charge, Akinteye was said to have, at different times, withdrawn from the bank’s account the total sum of N11million and diverted it into his personal company named ‘Deblad Nigeria Limited’.
He was also said to have unlawfully withdrawn the total sum of $166million USD, and paid into the account of Temitope Muhammed Imam, domiciled with Citi Bank N.A. of Utica/Clarkson, 702, Utica Avenue, Brooklyn New York, United State of America; and another account domiciled with Washington Mutual, 391, Eastern Parkway, Belford Avenue, New York, USA.
The second defendant, Adepoju, was alleged to have withdrawn total sum of N22.250million and diverted same to a limited liability company, Gad Press Limited.
The offences according to the prosecutor, Mrs. Ndidi Glady Ezinwa-Ukuba, are contrary to sections 18 (1)(a) and 18(3) and 15(1)(a)(I) of the Banks and other Financial Institutions Act Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004, and punishable under Section 18(2) and 16(1)(a) of the same Act.
Prior to the duo’s arraignment of the defendants on May 18, 2016, their lawyer, A.O. Sheriff, through a notice of preliminary objection, urged the court to dismiss the charge on the ground that the defendants had earlier been acquitted and discharged by Justice Okon Abang of the same court when they were formerly arraigned.
But the presiding judge, Justice Olatoregun, had dismissed the defendants’ application on the ground that the facts of the charge are not the same.