Court Begins Maina Trial In Absentia After Remanding Sen. Ali In Kuje Prison

Maina Trial

The court has begun Maina’s trial in absentia after claiming bail Senator Ali in Kuje prison on Monday.

Nigeria online news reports that the Abuja-based Federal High Court has started the trial of the former chairman of the late Pension Reform Task Force, Abdulrasheed Maina, in his absence.

This online news outlet gathered that Maina, who is being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on N2bn money laundering charges, had last attended court on July 2, 2020, during the cross-examination of the sixth prosecution witness by his legal team.

However, he had not attended subsequent proceedings since September 29, 2020, prompting the judge, Judge Okon Abang, to declare that he had jumped bail in a ruling issued on November 18, 2020.

The judge, in the November 18 ruling, revoked the bond that had been previously granted, ordered his arrest and ordered that his trial proceed in his absence.

Monday, the The judge ordered the return of Maina’s bail, Senator Ali Ndume, until you can present the fleeing defendant in court or post the $ 500 million bond to the Federal Government.

Maina was again absent from the hearing resumed in the case on Tuesday.

There was also no attorney representing him or his defendant company alongside him as his second defendant.

Following the request of the prosecutor, Mr. Mohammed Abubakar, the judge closed Maina’s right to continue with the cross-examination of the sixth process.

It also excluded the right of the second accused to question the witness.

The seventh witness for the prosecution, Ali Sani, also testified, and the defendants and their lawyers were not available for questioning.

The judge, who also closed the defendants’ right to cross-examine the witness, also admitted evidence presented by the prosecution without objection.

Judge Abang held that the defendants had the opportunity to question witnesses and challenge the admissibility of the offer of evidence, but did not take advantage of it.

“They are to blame,” the judge repeated every time he had to make a decision to close or foreclose on the rights of the defendants during the trial.

At the time of the presentation of this report on Thursday, the eighth prosecution witness had been invited to the stand to testify.