A Federal High Court in Abuja on Friday lifted an interim forfeiture of 40 landed properties granted against the former Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu.
Justice Inyang Ekwo lifted the order following a discovery that the forfeiture order was fraudulently obtained by the Federal Government against the properties.
The judge, while lifting the order, held that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, which obtained the order on behalf of the Federal Government, concealed information that led to granting it.
Specifically, Justice Ekwo said that EFCC, which was fully aware that Ekweremadu was in custody in the United Kingdom, failed to make the vital information as regards forfeiture available to the court.
With his detention in London, the Judge agreed with Chief Adegboyega Awomolo SAN, counsel to Ekweremadu, that there was no way the former Deputy Senate President would be opportune to defend his ownership of the disputed properties.
Justice Ekwo had, on November 4 last year, issued the interim forfeiture order in favour of the Federal Government following an ex-parte application brought before him by EFCC.
The Judge specifically directed that anybody who had an interest in the forfeited properties should indicate within 14 days of the publication of the interim forfeiture order from the court.
The former Deputy Senate President and his wife are currently standing trial in the United Kingdom over alleged organ harvesting.
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