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Staco Insurance In N200m Fraud Mess, Police Charge Firm, CEO, Others To Court

Police have filed a six-count charge bordering on N200 million fraud against Staco Insurance Plc alongside its former and current Chief Executive Officers (CEO), Sakiru Oyefeso, Bayo Fakorede before the Federal High Court in Lagos.

Also charged before the court is the company’s Executive Director in-charge of Management Services, Tayo Ajibulu.

Staco Insurance Plc and other defendants were charged before the court on six- counts charge of conspiracy, obtaining under false pretence and issuance of dud cheques.

In the charge, the police alleged that the insurance company and its officials committed the offences between July and August 2017.

The police claimed in the charge that all the defendants conspired among themselves to fraudulently obtained the sum of N200 million from a company named Growth and Development Asset Management Limited (GDAML) on the pretence that the money would be used for investment purposes.

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The police also alleged that the defendants failed to utilized the N200 million for its intended purposes and they equally failed to refund the money to the complainant.

The defendants were alleged to have on March 12, 2018, issued cheques from United Bank for Africa (UBA), the defunct Diamond Bank and First Bank Plc, to the alleged fraud victim, but were dishonoured for lack of insufficient funds.

Count one and six of the charge read:

“That you Sakiru Oyefeso, Bayo Fakorede, Tayo Ajibulu and Staco Insurance Plc, sometimes between the month of July 2017 and August 2017 in Lagos within the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court, did conspire to commit a felony to wit: obtaining money under false pretence and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 8 (a) of the Advance Fee Fraud Act 2006 and punishable under Section 1(3) of the same Act.

“That you Staco Insurance Plc, Bayo Fakorede and Tayo Ajibulu between August 2017 to March 2018 in Lagos within the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court, obtained the credit and induced the delivery of the sum of N200,000,000.00 (Two Hundred Million Naira) from Growth and Development Asset Management Limited in favour of Staco Insurance Pic by means of United Bank of Africa UBA cheques which were dishonored due to insufficient funds and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1 (1) (a)(b) of the Dishonored Cheques (Offences) Act i 2004 and punishable under Section 1 (1) (b) of the same Act”.

At the scheduled arraignment of the defendants, all the defendants were in court except the current Chief Executive Officer, Fakorede, who was said to be sick.

Fakorede’ counsel, Olushina Sofola (SAN), told the court that his client took ill and was hospitalized for treatment.

The prosecutor, Mrs. Ibijoke Akinpelu, while objecting to the request for adjournment made by Fakorede’s counsel, told the court that the matter was previciously adjourned for arraignment of all defendants, having been duly served with the charge and that the second defendant (Fakorede) was fully aware that the matter was fixed for arraignment.

Akinpelu also told the court that the second defendant (Fakorede) has not been in court since the charge was filed about six months ago.

The lawyer added that all adjournment have been at the instance of the second defendant.

She therefore asked the court for short date if the court is mindful of conceding to the defendant’s request for adjournment.

Following the submissions of the parties, the court adjourned the matter till November 7, for arraignment of the defendants.

Background:
It would be recalled that the Board of Directors of Staco Insurance Plc, at its meeting held in Lagos on July 30, 2018, passed a resolution dismissing Oyefeso as the CEO of the company on the grounds of financial misappropriation, abuse of office and breach of corporate governance best practices.
While Mr. Fakorede was appointed as new Chief Executive Officer of the Company.

24th January 2022
Nigerian Pantagraph
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