A Federal High Court in Lagos yesterday granted the President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Paul Usoro (SAN), 250 million bail.
Usoro was re-arraigned on a 10-count charge bordering on N1.4 billion fraud preferred against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
He was alleged to have conspired to convert the sum of N1.4 billion, property of Akwa Ibom State Government, which sum he and other defendants reasonably ought to have known formed part of the proceeds of an unlawful activity.
The anti-graft agency had first arraigned the NBA boss before Justice Muslim Hassan on December18, 2018.
He had pleaded not guilty to the charges, but the case before Justice Hassan was subsequently transferred to another judge, Justice Chuka Obiozor, following application by defence counsel.
On February14, Justice Obiozor in a ruling, had personally recused himself from the case on personal grounds, and said that the case file would be returned for re-assignment to another judge.
The case was re-assigned to Justice Rilwan Aikawa, who is the third judge before whom the charge is presented.
Yesterday, Mr. Rotimi Oyedepo appeared for the EFCC while Mr. Ifedayo Adedipe (SAN) appeared for the defendant.
The 10-count charge was read to Usoro and he also pleaded not guilty to all counts.
Defence counsel then made an application for the defendant to continue with the earlier bail granted by the previous judge, (Hassan)
This application was opposed by prosecution who argued that having applied that the case be transferred from Hassan, the defence could not therefore, benefit from the bail granted by same judge.
He said that although he was not opposed to bail, the court should grant its own bail terms as the matter was commencing afresh before it.