Court convicts ex-NIMASA acting DG Obi

NIMASA fraud: Court adjourns till March for adoption of final addresses
Calistus Obi. PHOTO: SHIPS & PORTS archive

The Federal High Court in Lagos on Thursday convicted a former Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) acting Director-General Callistus Obi.

Justice Mojisola Olatoregun found him guilty of money laundering.

She adjourned until May 28 for sentencing.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) arraigned Obi in April 12, 2016 on eight counts of converting N378,810,000 from NIMASA.

He was charged along with Dismass Alu Adoon, Grand Pact Limited and Global Sea Investment Limited.

Obi, a former NIMASA Executive Director, Maritime Labour and Cabotage Service, took over from Dr Patrick Akpobolokemi, who is also facing five separate fraud and theft charges.

Count one reads: “That you, Calistus Nwabueze Obi and Dismass Alu Adoon on or about the 5th day of August 2014, in Lagos, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did conspire amongst yourselves to commit an offence, to wit: Conversion of the sums of N111,000,000, property of NIMASA, knowing that the said sums were proceeds of stealing, and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 18(a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) (Amendment) Act, 2012 and punishable under Section 15(3) of the same Act.”

Obi, Global Seal and Grand Pact were said to have converted N42,755,000.00 on December 24, 2013.

EFCC said Obi, on May 2, 2013, converted N25,000,000, as well as N46.3million being “proceeds of stealing” between April 1 and December 11, 2014.