Law News
Money laundering: Doma, others lose bid to transfer case to another judge
Former governor of Nasarawa, Akwa Doma and two others, yesterday, lost their bid to force Justice Agather Okeke of the Federal High Court, Lafia, to hand off the case of money laundering being preferred against them by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
The trio lost the bid when the judge ruled that she would continue to hear the case as the issue of bias raised by them did not arise and had not been proved.
The application for the withdrawal of the judge from the case was filed by Timothy Anthony Anjide, the second accused person in the matter involving Aliyu Akwe Doma, Anjide and Dauda Egwe, who are being prosecuted on a 10 count-charge bordering on money laundering by the EFCC.
At the resumed hearing of the matter on Friday, the  defence counsel, Olalekan Ojo, who stood in for Charles Edosomwan, SAN, brought a motion on notice for an order of the court to transfer the case.
The defence alleged that there had been instances in the proceedings that suggested a likelihood of bias by the judge.
Ojo stated that the judge had failed to subpoena certain functionaries of the state while she had compelled the second accused, Anjide Timothy, to appear before the court in spite of his poor health condition.
He concluded that Anjide had lost confidence of getting a fair trial from the judge.
However, the prosecuting counsel, Kemi Pinheiro, SAN, urged the court to dismiss the application, arguing that the application did not show that the first and third accused had lost confidence in the court.
In dismissing the application, Justice Okeke stated that the application for transfer of the case lacked merit.
The case was adjourned to January 19, 20 and 21 2014 for continuation.
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