The Federal High Court in Abuja on Monday ordered the remand of Senator Ali Ndume over his inability to produce former Chairman of the defunct Pension Reformed Task Team, Abdulrasheed Maina, who has jumped bail in respect of his ongoing N2 billion money laundering trial.
Justice Okon Abang ordered that the Borno South Senator who stood surety for the fleeing defendant in May 2020 should be arrested and would only be released from prison until he either produces Maina in court or sells off the N500 million worth of property located in Asokoro, Abuja, which was used as the guarantee for the bail bond and tenders the evidence of the payment of the proceeds of the sale into the Federation Account.
The judge ordered that he be remanded in Kuje prison pending when he meets the condition for his release.
Justice Abang had, on November 18, 2020, issued a warrant of arrest against Maina, who failed to show up in court on four consecutive times to face his trial in the fraud charges brought against him by the Federal Government.
He ordered security agents in the country to arrest Maina anywhere he is found and bring him before the court to face the consequences of his jumping the bail granted him by the court.
Before issuing the order for his arrest, Justice Abang revoked the N500 million bail he granted Maina on the ground that the bail had been abused following his continuous absence in court.
The Judge, who also granted the request of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) that Maina’s trial in the fraud charges is conducted in his absence, gave Maina’s surety, Ndume till November 23, 2020, to show cause why he should not forfeit to the Federal Government, the N500 million bail bond he endorsed for the bail of Maina.
Recall that the EFCC had, on October 25, 2019, charged Maina and his son, Faisal, before the court alongside his firm, Common Input Property and Investment Ltd.
Maina pleaded not guilty to the 12-count charge and Justice Abang on January 28, varied his bail conditions, following his inability to meet the bail terms granted him in November 2019.
Abang reduced Maina’s bail condition from N1 billion to N500 million with a surety in like sum who must be a serving senator as opposed to the earlier order of producing two serving senators.
The judge ruled that the surety, who should not have any criminal case pending in any court, must have a landed property fully developed in Maitama, Asokoro, Wuse II, Katampe or Central Business District of Abuja, with Certificate of Occupancy attached as evidence.
Abang also ruled that the senator though would always come to the court at every adjourned date, only needed to come and sign a court register that would be opened at the registry, among other terms.