Former Minister of Aviation and Director-General of President Goodluck Jonathan’s 2015 re-election campaign, Mr Femi Fani-Kayode, on Monday told Justice John Tsoho of the Federal High Court in Abuja of his intention to enter into plea bargain with the federal government over his alleged fraud trial.
Fani-Kayode was arraigned before the court on a five-count charge of corruption and money laundering by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Fani-Kayode, who spoke through his counsel, Mr Ahmed Raji (SAN), at Monday’s proceedings disclosed that his client would like to explore other avenues on how the matter would be resolved.
Raji urged the court for an adjournment to enable him go through the file as he had just been briefed on the matter.
“My Lord, I am just coming into the case; I will need time to go through the file, so I would like to crave the indulgence of the court to enable me familiarise myself with the case.
“Looking at the facts of the case and the money involved, I believe that there are other options we can explore.
“The case involves the sum of N26 million and the law allows you to explore the option of a plea bargain and so many other options rather than go through trial”, Raji said.
He added that if the EFCC was amenable to plea bargain, the defence would take the option.
On his part, the prosecuting counsel, Mr Johnson Ojogbane said he was not opposing the application.
Ojogbane, however, asked the court to take cognisance of the fact that this was the second adjournment at the instance of the defence and asked for a definite date to commence trial.
He further urged the court to give a definite date for the commencement of trial.
Subsequently, the trial judge adjourned the suit till March 14, 2017, for the commencement of trial.
It would be recalled that Fani-Kayode was arraigned by the EFCC before Justice Tsoho on a fresh five counts bordering on money laundering.