Story By Gbenga Ogunbufunmi
An Ikeja Special Offences Court, Lagos, has adjourned the trial of an Oil marketer, Ayodeji Ibrahim Oluokun, who was charged before the court on alleged issuance of dud cheques valued $1.6 million, till December 10.
Ayodeji, who is said to be an Assistant Pastor of the Redeem Christian Church of God (RCCG) City of David Parish, Victoria Island, Lagos, was charged before Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo alongside his oil firm, Peak Petroleum Industry Nigeria Limited, by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on two counts charge of the offence.
The defendant and his company were first arraigned before the court on January 21, 2019, on the offence.
EFCC in the charge marked ID/8509c/19, alleged that the defendant and his company, sometimes in 2014, approached the management of GOSL Nigeria Limited, for a loan of $1 million and $666,666 respectively to enable him carry out operational activities in his company’s oil field in Bayelsa State.
He was said to have assured the company which is the complainant in the charge against him, that he would repay the money within a year.
Following the defendant’s failure to repay the loan as promised, he was alleged to have issued two post-dated Standard Chartered Bank Nigeria Limited cheques dated June 26, 2014 for the sum of $1 million and $666,666 respectively.
The EFCC stated that upon presentation of the cheques to the bank for withdrawal by the complainant on several occasions, they were returned un-cleared due to insufficient funds
The offence according to the prosecution, is said to be contrary to and punishable Section 1(1) (b) of the Dishonoured Cheques (Offences) Act, Cap D 11 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004
Ayodeji had however, pleaded not guilty to the charges and accordingly admitted to bail.
At the resumed trial of the defendant last Thursday, the court adjourned the matter till December 10, due to the absence of the Prosecutor, Ocholi Atta, who is said to have being transfered out of Lagos State office of the prosecuting agency, EFCC.
One of the charges read: “That you, Ayodeji Ibrahim Oluokun and Peak Petroleum Industry Nigeria Limited, on or about 26th June, 2014, at Lagos within the Ikeja Judicial Division issued a Standard Chartered Bank Nigeria Limited Cheque dated 26th June, 2014 for the sum of $1,000,000 (One Million Dollars) only payable to GOSL Nigeria Limited, which when presented for payment was dishonoured on the grounds that no sufficient funds were standing to the credit of the account on which cheque was drawn”.