The Federal High Court in Lagos, on Wednesday, ordered a former Minister of Aviation, Femi Fani-Kayode, to pay N200,000 for not making himself available for re-arraignment for alleged money laundering.
The judge, Daniel Osaigor, said he had gone through the court’s file and noted five different letters by Fani-Kayode seeking adjournment on same medical grounds.
He ordered that he should pay the N200,000 fine or risk revocation of his bail.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had charged Mr Fani-Kayode alongside a former Minister of State for Finance, Nenandi Usman.
Also charged is Yusuf Danjuma, a former Chairman of the Association of Local Governments of Nigeria, and a company, Jointrust Dimentions Nig. Ltd.
The EFCC preferred a 17-count charge of N4.6 billion money laundering against them before a judge, Mohammed Aikawa, who was previously handling the matter.
The alleged fraudulent transactions took place January to March 2015, the period which formed part of Mr Fani-Kayode’s time as the spokesperson for the Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) presidential campaigns for the reelection of then President Goodluck Jonathan in 2015.
Mr Jonathan lost the 2015 election to then candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and incumbent president, Muhammadu Buhari.
Mr Fani-Kayode, who recently defected to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), and the other defendants had all pleaded not guilty to the money laundering charges when the case was before Mr Aikawa as the trial judge.
The judge also granted them bail.
Trial had begun before Mr Aikawa and witnesses being led in evidence before the judge was transferred out of the Lagos jurisdiction of the court.
The case was then assigned to Mr Osaigor and the defendants scheduled for re-arraignment on Wednesday.