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BREAKING: Orji Kalu’s N7.56bn Fraud Conviction Voided by Supreme Court

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The Supreme Court has nullified the trial and conviction of former governor of Abia State, Orji Uzor Kalu over N7.1bn fraud.

Kalu’s co-defendants, Slok Nigeria Limited and his former aide, Ude Jones had challenged the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court in Lagos to conduct the trial after the presiding judge, who was elevated to the Court of Appeal, returned to conclude the proceedings.

In the lead judgment on Friday, Justice Ejembi Eko, declared as unconstitutional the provision of section 396(7) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015, on which the then President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Zainab Bulkachuwa relied on to authorise Justice Idris to return to the Court of Appeal to conclude the trial.

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The apex court therefore ordered a fresh trial of the case at the high court.

Kalu was on December 5 jailed for 12 years after finding him guilty of fraud to the tune of N7.56 billion.

The assets of Slok Nigeria Limited, Kalu’s company, were also forfeited to the Federal Government of Nigeria.

Similarly, the former governor’s aide and erstwhile Director of Finance in the Abia State House of Assembly was also sentenced in an amended 39-count, the EFCC had charged them with.

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