The prosecution in the trial of Justice Adeniyi Ademola of the Federal High Court and two others yesterday tendered cash, guns and some other items allegedly recovered from the judge’s home by operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS).
Operatives of the DSS on December 7 last year raided the houses of some judges including Justice Ademola.
The cash, consisting of N54million; $171,779; €4,400; £80 and R1,010 (Indian Rupee) were brought into the court in bags and tendered by the prosecution through its 11th witness, Umar Ahmed, an Exhibit Keeper with the DSS.
Also tendered were two Avar Magnum Pump Action gun, bearing the names of Justice Ademola and Justice Ahmed Mohammed (also of the Federal High Court.)
There were also original copies and photocopies of the guns’ licensces, in the names of Justices Ademola and Mohmammed; two cartridges – a red head of 25 pieces and a white head of10 pieces, among the items tendered; two iPads and an 8GB flash drive
Led in evidence by lead prosecution lawyer, Segun Jegede, Umar said four telephone handsets belonging to the judge were also recovered from the house.
He said the phones were returned to the judge after taking them “to the lab for exploitation” he said the iPads were not returned.
Umar while identifying the items one after the other, said “The white bag contains 12 bundles of N1,000 notes, making N500,000 per bundle. The total is N6m.
“The small black bag with a design contains 17 bundles of N1,000 each which equal to N8.5m.
“The ‘Ghana-Must-Go’ (grey in colour) contains 79 bundles making N39.5m.”
He said the dollars comprised 51 bundles of $100 bills, as well as other lower dollar denominations, which he put at $121,779 in total. He said the rest of the cash included €4,400; £80 and R1,010 (Indian Rupee).
The defence team including, Onyechi Ikpeazu (SAN), Robert Clarke (SAN) and Jeph Njikonye, did not object to the admission of the items in evidence by the court.
Shortly after they were admitted, Justice Jude Okeke invited the Director of Litigation of the FCT High Court, Mr. Madugu Mohammed, to make an arrangement for the safe keeping of the money.
Lawyers to both parties agreed to hand over the money to Mohammed for onward transfer to a “deposit account”.
The judge ordered that the cash sums marked as Exhibits X, Z, BB, CC, DD, EE and FF, must always be made available to the court whenever the need arose.
Under cross-examination, Umar admitted that there were other items, mostly cheque books, recovered from Justice Ademola, but not yet returned to him.
“I do not decide what to bring to court,” the exhibit keeper said.
Testifying as the 10th prosecution witness, an employee of Guaranty Trust Bank (GTBank) Malik Babatunde said Justice Ademola transferred N175m from his (Justice Ademola’s) account to Don Parker Properties’ account on January 24, 2014.