Court withholds professor’s passport over $40,000 bribe

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Justice Angela Otaluka of the Federal Capital Territory High Court has ordered one Professor John Ifeanyichukwu to submit his passport and other valid travel documents to the court over alleged bribery of a $40,000 cheque offered to some officers of the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission.

The ICPC arraigned Ifeanyichukwu over allegations of bribery and inducement of its officers.

In a statement, the anti-graft agency said, “The cheque was part of the $50,000 and a house in Abuja that was promised to the officer to compromise investigation by retrieving the accused person’s devices, MacBook S/N CIML8BUGDTY3, MacBook S/N W80204J7ATN and an iPhone 11pro, which were in the custody of the ICPC for investigation.”

Ifeanyichukwu had earlier been reported to the commission by the presidency for alleged acts bordering on corruption, extortion and money laundering.

In a Charge No: CR/025/2022, the ICPC informed the court of how the defendant induced one of its operatives to smuggle out a particular iPhone and a laptop and to replace them with a dummy that was to be provided by his personal assistant.

Speaking further, the commission said, “The accused person’s action is contrary to Section 18 (b) and punishable under Section 18 (d) of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000.”

The accused, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge when it was read to him in court. He was therefore admitted to bail in the sum of N10m and two sureties in like sum. The sureties must be resident within the jurisdiction of the court and one of them must have a landed property in Abuja.

The case was adjourned to Tuesday, June 21, 2022 for commencement of hearing.

Ifeanyichukwu is expected to submit his international passport and other valid travel documents to the court before the next adjourned date otherwise his bail will be revoked.

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