The Chairman of DAAR Communications Plc, Chief Raymond Dokpesi, was on Wednesday, December 9, arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) before a Federal High Court in Abuja.
Dokpesi, who is a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is standing trial for a six count charge of money laundering and other fraud related charges.
The PDP stalwart, who was reportedly arraigned alongside his firm, Daar Investment and Holdings Ltd, pleaded not guilty to the six count charge filed against him by the anti-graft agency.
Justice Gabriel Kolawole, after taking Dokpesi’s plea, ordered that he should be remanded in the custody of the EFCC pending the hearing of his bail application by 12.30pm tomorrow, December 10.
During the hearing, counsel to the EFCC, Mr. Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), accused the defendants of receiving N2.1 billion from the office of the National Security Adviser (NSA) between October 2014 and March 19, 2015.
The prosecutor told the court that the aforementioned amount was given to the defendant by NSA for PDP’s presidential media campaign, which he said was against the recommendation of the Public Procurement Act, Money laundering Act as well as the EFCC Act.
After listening to the prosecution counsel, Justice Kolawole, therefore adjourn trial till February 17, 18 and March 2 and 3 respectively.
The arraignment today is not surprising as The Nation reported yesterday, that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has filed money laundering charges against Dokpesi, former National Security Adviser (NSA) Sambo Dasuki, former Sokoto state governor, Attahiru Bafarawa, former minister of state for finance, Bashir Yuguda and former director of finance, Office of the National Security Adviser(ONSA), Shaibu Salisu.
Dokpesi was arrested by the EFCC on Tuesday, December 1, for being a party of the arms purchase scandal involving Dasuki, and the theft of $2.1 billion from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), and to make matters worse, the DAAR communication chairman's family offered conflicting statements about why Dokpesi received the money from the NSA.
The Cable reported that Dasuki, who was the first to be arrested by officials of the EFCC over the misappropriation of $2.1 billion arms procurement fund had his trial for the fresh application filed by the federal government seeking to stop him from travelling abroad for medical treatment, adjourned till January 20, 2016, by the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja.
Also, as the singing continues, The Nation reports that strong indications have emerged that the former president Goodluck Jonathan may be interrogated by the EFCC for his alleged role in the misappropriation of funds meant for the procurement of arms.