Thursday, December 12, 2019

EFCC explains how Maina's son operated accounts used as conduits for illegal funds

EFCC explains how Maina

An investigative officer of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mohammed Goje, has narrated how numerous bank accounts were discovered in the name of Faisal Maina, son of the embattled for former Chairman of the Pension Reform Task Team, Abdulrasheed Maina.  

The EFCC is prosecuting Faisal over an allegation of fraud to the tune of N58m. The commission accused him of operating accounts that were used as conduits for illegal transactions.  

Goje while testifying on Wednesday, December 11th said the commission discovered one Alhaji Faisal Abdullahi Farms with the United Bank of Africa which Faisal is a co-signatory to. The EFCC official added that Alhaji Faisal Farms is operated by Abdulrasheed Maina and that investigation revealed that the account was funded with the proceeds of illegality.  

He said, “We came across the following companies: Drew Investment & Construction Company LTD, Cruise City Ltd; Northridge Property Int’l Ltd; Mambilla Resorts. These companies have the defendant (Faisal) as a director.
“We also discovered that property at Ibrahim Taiwo Road, Kaduna, was acquired in the name of Drew Investment & Construction Ltd. We also discovered that another property at Gombe Road, Biu LGA of Borno State was acquired in the name of Cruise City Ltd.  
“We also discovered that property at No. 3a Sambo Road, Kaduna, was acquired in the name of Faisal A. Abdullahi. A property at Plot 165, Life Camp, Abuja was acquired in the name of Dr Faisal A. Abdullahi. A property at No 16e, Katuru Road, Kaduna, was also acquired in the name of Faisal A. Abdullahi.”
Goje explained why his unit, the Pension Fraud Team, was created as a unit under the EFCC. He said, “During that time, Abdulrasheed Maina was the Chairman of the Pension Reform Task Team established to restructure the pension office. He also became a subject of investigation. It was in the course of the investigation of Abdulrasheed Maina that the name of the defendant (Faisal) featured prominently.
“During the investigation of Abdulrasheed Maina, who was involved in a complex web of money laundering, which include movement of funds from the police pension account as well as the accounts of the pension office of the Head of Service of the Federation to corporate entities as payment for biometric enrollment; payment of collective allowances and payment of contracts, which were fraudulent.  
“They obliged us with copies of incorporation, Form C02 and other documents, which revealed the directors of the companies and their shareholders. Also, we sent letters of investigation activities to banks and requested for details of accounts and they obliged with these documents.”
The witness said in September 2019, the EFCC received an intelligence report that Abdulrasheed Maina was in the country “but they did not know where he was.
“So, the EFCC liaised with the DSS to assist us in effecting the arrest of Maina. He was eventually arrested along with the defendant (Faisal) on September 29, 2019.
The DSS handed them over to us on October 2, 2019, along with some items recovered from them, which include cars and personal belongings in suitcases, handbags and Bagco bags.  
“We granted them an opportunity to invite their lawyers because we were directed to record their statements.  
"On October 3, Faisal was interviewed in the presence of his lawyer. His statement was recorded in his own handwriting and signed. Additional statements were recorded about three or four times later. He also filled his declaration of assets forms in the presence of his lawyer."

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