A social media celebrity, Ismaila Mustapha, popularly known as Mompha, was Monday docked before the Federal High Court, Lagos,, on a 14- counts bordering on N33 billion money laundering.
He pleaded not guilty to all the offences. Following his not guilty plea, the presiding judge, Justice Mohammad Liman ordered his remand in Prison pending hearing of his bail application on Friday, November 29.
In the charge pressed against Mompha by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and signed by Rotimi Oyedepo, the agency alleged that Mompha laundered the funds through a firm, Ismalob Global Investment Ltd, between 2015 and 2018. Islamob Global Investments is the second defendant in the charge.
The prosecuting counsel, Oyedepo informed the court that the defendant procured his company, Ismalob Global Investment Limited, to retain the aggregate some of N18, 059,353,413 billion between 2015 and 2019.
He was also alleged to have aided his company to retain the sum of N14, 946, 773, 393 billon between 2015 and 2017, in addition to not complying with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and Federal Ministry of Trades and Investment in carrying out financial transactions.
EFCC alleged that he also unlawfully negotiated a foreign exchange transaction with total sum of N630, 125, 900 million, for some individuals.
Those listed in the charge are; Mr. Ikechukwu Kingsley Onuzulike; Mr. Ojei Osemike, Mr. Okafor lkenna and M Tony Global Communications.
The offences, according to the EFCC, contravene Sections 18(c) and 15(2)(d) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act, 2011 as amended and punishable under section 15 (3) of the same Act.
The prosecutor urged the court to remand the defendant in prison custody and a date for trial. Responding, the defendant’s lawyer, Mr. Gboyega Oyewole (SAN) told the court that he was not opposed to the prosecution’s request for trial date, but said the defendant’s bail application has been filed and same had been served on the prosecution.
The prosecutors admitted being served with the application but asked the court for a short date to respond. Following the submissions of the parties, Justice Liman fixed Friday, November 29, for hearing of the bail application and commencement of trial.