N600m Fraud: Court Grants Former PICOMSS Boss N500m Bail


Senator Iroegbu in Abuja

Justice U.P. Kekemeke of High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, , has granted bail in the sum of N500 million to the former chairman, Presidential Implementation Committee on Maritime Safety (PICOMSS), Air Vice Marshal (AVM) Saliu Atawodi (rtd), and the Chief Executive Officer (CEO of Hypertech Company, Mr. Rabiu Hassan.

The duo were arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), on May 11, 2016 for allegedly defrauding the government to the tune of over N600m through suspicious contracts to procure military boats.

The Head, Media and Publicity, EFCC, Mr. Wilson Uwujaren, who confirmed this in a statement on Monday, said that Hassan and Atowodi were granted bail with two sureties of the directorate cadre of the civil service.

One of the counts reads: “That you, AVM Saliu Atawodi (retd.), whilst serving as the chairman of the Presidential Implementation Committee on Maritime Safety and Security (PICOMSS), Rabiu Hassan and Hypertech (Nig) Limited on or about the 28th day of November, 2011 in Abuja within the jurisdiction of this honourable court with intent to defraud did conspire to obtain property by false pretence the sum of Six Hundred and Twenty Million Nine Hundred and Ten Thousand Naira (N620,910,000.00) , property of the Federal Government under the pretence that the money represents payment for the supply of six pieces of K-38 armoured patrol boats to Presidential Implementation Committee on Maritime Safety and Security (PICOMSS) and which pretence you knew was false.”

While ruling on the bail applications by counsels to the defendants, Karina Tunyan (SAN), and Shareef Mohammed respectively, Justice Kekemeke, who cited Section 36 of the 1999 Constitution and Section 162 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA), held that the defendants were entitled to bail.