Alex Enumah in Abuja
The trial of Justice Adeniyi Ademola of the Federal High Court, his wife and a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Joe Agi, resumed yesterday with a prosecution witness revealing that the judge informed him that N54m which was part of the cash recovered from his house was earmarked for the construction of his property in Lagos.
The witness, Babatunde Adepoju, an investigator with the DSS, who investigated Justice Ademola, revealed in his evidence-in-chief that during his interrogation at the DSS headquarters, Abuja on October 9, 2016, the judge admitted ownership of the N54million recovered at his apartment, explaining that the money was earmarked for construction works at one of his properties at No. 55 Oduduwa Crescent, Ikeja G.R.A, Lagos.
According to the witness, Ademola had told him the monies were for onward delivery to a construction firm, Dadks Concepts, which was carrying out some major reconstruction works for him.
In addition, the witness disclosed that Justice Ademola also explained that the $171,799 recovered at his residence were accumulated estacode, family and withdrawals from his personal account as upkeep money meant for two of his children in the United Kingdom.
Adepoju narrated how he was assigned to be in charge of the investigation of Justice Ademola on allegations of misuse of judicial powers, corrupt practices and bribe taking.
He disclosed that he got to know the judge at his office at the DSS Headquarters after the execution of a search warrant at the official residence of the judge at 32 Samuel Ogbemudia Crescent in Abuja in October 9, 2016.
He said the search on Justice Ademola’ official residence led to the recovery of incriminating materials including the recovery of two rifles from the house of the judge.
The witness said a ‘ballistician’ was consulted on the two rifles recovered at Justice Ademola’s house and from his report, he was able to find that the weapons were not mere metals but fall under category of prohibited firearms and could only be licensed at the discretion of the President of Nigeria.
Also on the firearms, the witness said he also interviewed Justice A.R. Mohammed to confirm the veracity of Justice Ademola’s claim that he owns the weapon and Justice A.R. Mohammed, in his response, denied ownership of the weapon.
The riffles, he said, bearing his name is licensed while the other bearing Justice A.R. Mohammed.
He said men from British High Commission and DSS advised that some of the judges should procure firearms, based on the sensitivity of their duties as sitting judges.
He admitted ownership of one of the riffles, saying the one bearing A.R. Mohammed belongs to his fellow judge.
These weapons had 35 and 36. He explained that the weapons were supplied by a licenced gun dealer Humanities Ltd. Office in Lagos and Warri.
“I examined the riffles and they bear expiration date. Nov. 2015. Both riffles have same expiry date.
He explained that he was going to furnish me with the renewal. But he has not done that. We ended the session when he said he was tired.
“I queried further to know why he was in possession of the 2nd firearms, he responded that on two occasions, Justice Mohammed, the supposed owner made efforts to collect it from him but he was out of station. That thereafter, he was involved in a car accident. He said it would have been insensitive of him to ask Justice A. R. Mohammed to come for the rifle, given his condition.
“ On the allegations of $200 bribe, he asserted that the petitioners, Jenkins, had after submitting his petition to NJC come back to apologise to him claiming that he was misinformed, by counsel to Delta State govt.
“On bribe taking, Kanu and Dasuki, Ademola respond that when the defence submitted their bail applications, there was no counter affidavit from the prosecution team. That according to them, the matter be left at the discretion of the court.
“As regards Kanu’s case, Ademola denied receiving any bribe. He said the case was earlier discharge at the Magistrates court, and after the case was brought to him, counsel to DSS, Moses Idako, requested for his stay in custody for 90 days and after the expiration of the 90 days, he felt there was no need to keep him.
On the money recovered in his apartment, he admitted the ownership of the money. He said they were conversions from foreign currencies to naira, Withdr