Serial fraudster, Fred Ajudua, weeps as court orders transfer to Kirikiri Maximum Prisons

Fred Ajudua

Justice Mojisola Dada of the Ikeja Special Offences Court has denied the bail application of a Lagos socialite and alleged serial fraudster, Fred Ajudua.

Dada in a ruling on Thursday, ordered that Ajudua, who has been in custody at the Ikoyi Prisons be transferred to the Kirikiri Maximum Prisons.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that on hearing that he would be moved to Kirikiri Maximum Prisons, Ajudua, who was in the dock, bowed his head and wept.

Dada noted that Ajudua’s criminal trial is one of the oldest in the docket of the Lagos State Judiciary and has suffered a lot of setbacks, due to the perceived health challenges of the defendant.

“Trial in this case has commenced and the prosecution has called two witnesses.

“The court refers to the Court of Appeal ruling of over four years ago and notes that the defendant has had sufficient time to treat himself and he has failed to do that.

“This case has suffered series of adjournments on health grounds for 13 years. I am not persuaded because this case is one of the oldest in Lagos State.

“The sickness of the defendant cannot further delay the case. Parties should vigorously pursue the conclusion of this trial.

“The defendant, therefore, should be moved from Ikoyi Prisons to the Kirikiri Maximum Prisons. However, the defendant is to be granted unfettered access to a medical facility in Kirikiri,” Dada said.

Counsel for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Temitope Banjo, thanked the judge for the ruling.

On June 13, during the last court sitting on the matter, Banjo in a lengthy submission, asked the court to deny Ajudua bail because he was a “flight risk”, who had a history of avoiding justice.

However, Ajudua’s counsel, Norrison Quakers (SAN), had in a bail application, dated June 4, urged the court to grant bail to the defendant on health grounds, noting that Ajudua had only one functional kidney.

Ajudua is standing trial on a 12-count amended charge of conspiracy to obtain money by false pretences, obtaining money by false pretences, uttering forged document and forgery, among other charges.

He is accused of defrauding two Germans, Michael Kramer and Ziad Abu-Zalaf, of one million dollars in a phoney business deal in 1993.

The two Germans have testified as prosecution witnesses against Ajudua in the trial.

The case has been adjourned until September 27 and 28 for trial.