For taking part in a N5.2bn fraud, a former Managing Director of the Rural Electricity Agency, Mr. Samuel Gakpe, has been sentenced to three years in prison with the option of paying a fine of N5m.
Similarly, four other senior officials of the agency were sentenced to three years in prison with the option of paying a N500,000 fine within 30 days.
The four other convicts included an accountant in the REA, Simon Kirdi Nanle; Director of Projects, Kayode Orekoya; Assistant Director, Abdusamad Hahun; and Head of Legal Department, Kayode Oyedeji.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission had arraigned the convicts before Justice Adebukola Banjoko of an FCT High Court nearly 10 years ago.
They were charged by the EFCC for criminal breach of trust in fraudulently awarding contract for Grid Extension and Solar Electricity from the amended 2008 budget of the REA.
The convicts were said to have fraudulently facilitated the withdrawal of N119.7m from the account of the agency domiciled in Central Bank of Nigeria.
In the course of trial, the prosecution led by Kemi Pinheiro, (SAN), called seven witnesses before closing its case. Rather than open its defence, the defendants through Paul Ewekoro (SAN), made a no-case submission which was overruled by the court and thereafter were called upon to open their defences.
The defendants were accordingly convicted and sentenced.Punch