The Lagos High Court sitting in Ikeja on Monday dismissed a no-case submission filed by a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mr. Rickey Tarfa, during his trial for obstruction and perverting the course of justice.
Tarfa had informed the court that he had no case to answer when he was about to open his defence during proceedings.
Justice Aishat Opesanwo, said in a ruling the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had established a prima facie case against Tarfa and he should proceed with his defence.
The judge also did not award the lawyer N150 million in exemplary damages for “malicious prosecution” which he had demanded from the anti-graft agency.
She said: “I have taken consideration of Section 38(2) of the EFCC Act and Section 97(3) of the Criminal Law of Lagos 2011, the oral and documentary evidence given by the prosecution.
“I am satisfied that the prosecution has established a prima facie case against the defendant.
“I invite the defendant to proceed with his defence of the three-count charge contained in the information herein.”
Tarfa is arraigned for obstruction of justice and perverting the course of justice by the EFCC.
The Commission alleged that Tarfa willfully obstructed two of its officers — Moses Awolusi and Sanusi Mohammed — from arresting his clients within the premises of Lagos High Court in Igbosere.
Tarfa’s clients – Gnanhoue Sourou and Nazaire Odeste – were alleged by the EFFC to have committed some financial crimes.
The EFCC also alleged that Tarfa engaged in alleged illegal and secret communication with Justice Mohammed Yunusa, a Federal High Court judge, who presided over the case.