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A Federal High Court in Lagos has ordered the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to release all items seized from a social media influencer, Ismaila Mustapha popularly known as Mompha.

The items include five luxury wristwatches, an apple iPod, an iPhone 8 device and a pair of sunglasses, which were among other items found on him on his arrest last October 19, in Abuja.

Justice Liman made the order while ruling on a July 6 application filed by Mompha’s counsel, Mr Gboyega Oyewole (SAN).

EFCC counsel Mr Rotimi Oyedepo had told the judge that it had earlier released Mompha’s Air Pod and sunglasses when the application was filed.

He said the other properties Mompha sought were still with the commission for investigative purposes.

Mompha is standing trial alongside his company, Ismalob Global Investment Ltd, on an amended twenty two-count charge bordering on cyber fraud and money laundering to the tune of N33

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Ruling on Friday, Justice Mohammed Liman noted that although the prosecution has the right to seize a property during an arrest, likewise a duty to approach the court for an interim order, due processes must be observed and failure to do this is considered illegal.

He noted further that the items had been with the EFCC for eight months already.

Liman held: “None of these items was listed as exhibit, none of the items was listed on the charge. At this stage, there is nothing on record that the items seized is being investigated on.

“The retention of the property without compliance with due process violates the requirements of Section 29 of the Act”

“Failure to release the property is illegal. As at today, no charge has been file regards the items. It is too long to withhold the applicant properties.”

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Justice Liman therefore ordered the release and return of the items to the defendant.

The defendant also applied for the release of his international passport, which was not opposed by the prosecution.

Mompha is on trial on an alleged N33billion money laundering and cyber fraud charge.

He and his firm were on March 4, 2020 re-arraigned before Justice Mohammed Liman on 22 counts.

They were first arraigned on a 14-count count charge last November 25, following his arrest last October 19, at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja.

According to the anti-graft agency, the defendant is based in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The Commission alleged that Mompha is a major figure in an organised transnational cyber fraud network, adding that he used Ismalob Investment to launder the funds, part of which he used in acquiring properties in Dubai.

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Mompha pleaded not guilty and is out on bail.

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Abass Sulaiman Adegoke, well known as Adegoke is a student of Federal Polytechnic Ede studying Civil Engineering, He is a media enthusiast, loves traveling, and has a special interest in personal development.

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UPDATE: Naira Marley pleads guilty in court, fined N100k

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The Lagos State Special Offences (Mobile) Court, Oshodi has fined singer Afeezz Fashola and his manager N100, 000 for flouting the ban on interstate travels in June this year.

The singer and his manager had on June 8 this year, travelled from Lagos to Abuja and back to Lagos for a drive-through concert in Abuja. He was arraigned before the court by the state police command today August 6.

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A statement from the spokesperson of the state police command, Bala Elkana, said Naira Marley was arraigned alongside his Manager Seyi Awouga on a one-count charge of ”breach of the cessation of movement and interstates travel order made by the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria under Regulation 4(i) of the Lagos State Infectious Disease Emergency Prevention) Regulation No 2 of 2020 and committed an offence punishable under Section 58 Public Health Law, Ch. P16, Laws of Lagos State 2015”

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When the charge was read to them, Naira Marley and his manager pleaded guilty and were awarded a fine of one hundred thousand naira each by the presiding Magistrate.

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Entertainment

BREAKING: Ka3na, Lilo evicted from #BBNaija

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Ka3na and Lilo have been evicted from Big Brother Naija house.

This was announced by Ebuka during the first BBNaija Lockdown Live show, held on Sunday

Four housemates were put up for possible, comprising Lilo, Eric, Praise and Ka3na.

However, the Head of House and Deputy Head of House were automatically saved from eviction.

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