17 January 2013

Nigeria: Money Laundering - Judge's Absence Stalls Gov Lamido's Son Trial

Abuja — The trial of Aminu Lamido, son of Jigawa State governor, Sule Lamido, could not proceed yesterday due to the absence of the presiding judge, Justice Shehu Yahaya, of the Federal High Court in Kano.

Although Aminu had been brought to court by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, at about 8.45am, court officials were not ready to proceed with the trial.

An hour later, the Deputy Chief Registrar of the Court announced that the judge was unavailable to take on the case but promised to communicate a new date for the arraignment to the parties. He gave no reason for the judge's absence.

Aminu, who faces a one-count charge of money laundering, was arrested by EFCC agents on December 12, 2012, at Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, Kano on his way to Egypt, for failure to declare the $50,000 he had on him to Customs as required by law.

Section 12 of the Foreign Exchange (Monitoring and Miscellaneous Provisions) Act Cap F 34 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 and Section 2(3) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 requires that travellers declare their foreign currency before the Nigerian Customs Service.

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