A Federal High Court Judge, Justice Yunusa Nasir, was on Wednesday arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, before a Lagos State High Court sitting in Ikeja. Justice Nasir was arraigned on a four-count charge with a staff of Rickey Tarfa Chamber, Esther Agbor on a one-count charge of offering gratification.
According to EFCC prosecutor, Anslem Ozioko, the indicted judge while serving as a judicial officer attempted to pervert the course of justice constantly engaged in private and confidential text messages conversation between Rickey Tarfa, a senior advocate in a matter before him.
It was alleged that Esther Agbo in the course of her employment in Rickey Tarfa Chamber gave gratification of one million and five hundred thousand naira to the judge to induce him to give favourable decision to the chamber matter before him. The defendants pleaded not guilty and Ozioko asked the court to remand the defendants in prison custody and fixed a trial date.
Responding, the Yunusa’s counsel, I. Mohammed opposed the prosecutor application urging court to disregard it, adding that they have an application seeking for bail on self recognition. Second defendant counsel, John Odubela, SAN, prayed that the court should grant his client bail on the ground that she is a nursing mother who just put to bed through cesarean saying that she would not jump bail if granted.
In her ruling, the trial Judge, Justice Sherifat Solebo granted bail on self recognition to the indicted judge while advising him not to travel out of the court jurisdiction and instructed the second defendant to provide two sureties in like sum with one million naira. Further hearing has been adjourned till February 20, for trial.