Court Dismisses Justice Perversion Charges Against High Court Judge

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An Ikeja Special Offences Court on Monday dismissed a case of alleged pervasion of justice against a judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Mohammed Yinusa.

The Economic and Financial crimes Commission (EFCC) filed the suit against the judge.

The court discharged Justice Yunusa, following an application filed by second defence counsel, John Odubela (SAN), urging the court to strike out the criminal charges against the defendant.

Odubela told the court that the defendant had been reinstated as a judicial officer by the National Judicial Council (NJC).

The lawyer informed the court that the National Judicial Council (NJC), in a letter, dated December 29, 2020, lifted the suspension imposed on Justice Yinusa.

The EFCC, in February 2020, re-arraigned Justice Yunusa before the court, for allegedly taking bribe from two lawyers, including a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Rickey Tarfa.

He was arraigned alongside a worker at the firm of Rickey Tarfa & Co., Esther Agbor, who was accused of paying N1.5 million into Justice Yunusa’s account.

They were arraigned on an amended nine-count charge bordering on an attempt to pervert the course of justice, corruption by public official, use of office or position for gratification to the tune of N2,250,000.

Justice Yunusa and Agbor had pleaded not guilty to the amended nine-count charge.

Also, in the letter by the Deputy Chairman of NJC, Justice Bode Rhode-Vivour, and addressed to Yinusa, the Council lifted the suspension of the judge while awaiting the action of Mr. President on its recommendation.

EFCC’s prosecuting counsel, Mr. Wahab Shittu, had argued that the case was at its advanced stage and would be impossible to strike out the matter on the basis of the letter from the NJC.

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Shittu argued that making such a decision was premature as it would set a dangerous precedent since the findings of the NJC had not been ratified by the President.

The Nation

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