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Money Laundering: Supreme Court Knocks Out Case Against Dele Belgore



The Supreme Court sitting in Abuja the FCT has knocked out a money laundering charge preferred against the former governorship candidate in Kwara State, Dele Belgore (SAN).

News Nigeria understands that the Apex court allowed the appeal against the ruling of Justice Rilwan Aikawa of Federal High Court, Lagos delivered in November 2018.

Justice Aikawa had dismissed a ‘no case submission’ application made by Belgore and his co-defendant, a former Minister of Planning, Professor Abubakar Sulaiman, in the N450m Money Laundering Charge made against them by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

In dismissing the application, the lower court had held that after a careful study of the prosecution’s case, he had formed an opinion that the defendants had certain explanations to make. The judge then ordered them to open their defense.

Dissatisfied with the ruling, Belgore filed an appeal at the Lagos Division of the Court of Appeal. After considering the appeal, the court dismissed it.

But in its ruling today, the Supreme Court allowed the appeal on the ground that the Federal High Court, Lagos Division lacked the jurisdiction to entertain the charge.

The Court was of the view that offenses for which the defendant was charged cannot be tried in Lagos but where the offense was allegedly committed in Kwara State.

Following this verdict, the EFCC has said that the defendant will be arraigned afresh in the state.

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