Star Orient ex-MD Dare Osamo arraigned over alleged N1.6bn fraud

Former managing director of Star Orient Nig. Ltd Dare Osamo and a lawyer Bisola Olore were on Wednesday arraigned before an Ikeja High Court for alleged N1.6 billion fraud.

Lagos State directorate of public prosecution (DPP) filed an 11-count fraud charge against them.

Osamo and Olore jointly pleaded not guilty to three counts bordering on conspiracy and obtaining under false pretences while Osamo alone pleaded not guilty to eight counts of obtaining under false pretences, stealing and forgery.

The lead prosecution counsel Adetutu Oshinusi alleged that the defendants committed the offences from 2016 to 2019 while acting as officers of the aviation fueling company alongside others at large.

She alleged that Osamo and Olore signed Star Orient Nig. Ltd board of directors’ resolution dated January 19, 2016, and presented the document to First City Monument Bank as the consensus of the directors of the company for opening of an account.

“The duo fraudulently secured a debenture in the sum of N300 million and fraudulently authorised borrowing of N100 million by Fund Quest Financial Services Ltd. against the assets of Star Orient Ltd,” she said.

Osamo is alleged to have unlawfully converted the company’s funds amounting to N1.6 billion to his own use.

After hearing submissions from both counsels, Justice Oyindamola Ogala granted Osamo (first defendant) bail in the sum of N20 million with two sureties in like sum.

The judge granted Olore (second defendant) bail in the sum of N10 million with two sureties in like sum.

She said the sureties of the defendants must provide evidence of landed property ownership in Lagos as well as evidence of their financial status. Also, the defendants must hand over their passports to the court pending the trial.

The case was adjourned until February 2, 2022 for trial.