Ruling on the no-case submission filed by three oil marketers charged with a N789.6 million fuel subsidy fraud will be delivered on November 17 by the Lagos High Court, Ikeja.
Justice Lateefa Okunnu fixed the date after hearing the submissions of their counsels, Prof. Alfred Kasumu (SAN), Mr. Abubakar Shamsudeen and Mr. Eubena Ahmedu, as well as that of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr. Rotimi Jacobs (SAN).
The marketers – Adamu Maula, George Ogbonna and Emmanuel Morah – are arraigned alongside their firms, Downstream Energy Sources Ltd and Rocky Energy Ltd.
They were re-arraigned on April 1, 2014 on an amended 26-count charge bordering on conspiracy, obtaining money by false pretences, forgery, uttering and use of false documents.
The EFCC alleged that the defendants did not import the 10,862 metric tonnes of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) for which they received subsidy payment from the Federal Government.
However, their lawyers in separate no-case submissions urged the court to dismiss the charge for want of jurisdiction.
“The entire 26 counts against the applicants all relate to matters over which only the Federal High Court had exclusive jurisdiction as provided in Section 251 (a)(g) (n) and (3) of the 1999 Constitution and Section 19 of the Admiralty Jurisdiction Act, 2004.
“The entire evidence led by the prosecution and contents of the 26 counts amended information together with the extant laws, this honourable court lacks the jurisdiction to adjudicate on the information,” they said.
The defence lawyers argued that the evidence adduced so far by the 11 prosecution witnesses had not established a prima facie case against the defendants.