EFCC to arraign 6 CBN officials, 16 bankers on Thursday over alleged sharp practices on mutilated notes

Six officials of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and 16 bankers alleged in the mega scam involving the theft and re-circulation of defaced and mutilated currencies maybe arraigned in court by the EFCC on Thursday.

The EFCC has concluded plans to arraign the six top executives of the CBN and 16 other bankers working with commercial banks, following their implication in the mega scam involving the theft and re-circulation of defaced and mutilated currencies.

While carrying out the assignment, the investigation team was alleged to have found one of the currency boxes filled only with old newspapers rather than 20 bundles of N1000 notes.

The indicted CBN officials are:
Patience Okoro-Eye (Abuja) , Afolabi Olufemi (Lagos), Kolawole Babalola (Ibadan), Olaniran Muniru Adeola (Ibadan), Fatai Yusuf, Adekunle (Head, Security, CBN, Ibadan) and Ilori Adekunle Sunday (Akure).

The lid on the scam, widely suspected to have gone on unchecked for years, was blown on November 3, 2014 via a petition to the EFCC alleging that over N6.58billion was cornered and discretly recycled by top executives of the CBN at the Ibadan branch.

This sparked off the investigation by the EFCC.

The deposit banks in this instance are Zenith Bank, FCMB, Wema Bank, Access Bank, First Bank, Skye Bank, Ecobank and Sterling Bank.

The suspects will be arraigned on a five-count charge by the EFCC before a Federal High Court in Ibadan, Oyo State, between Tuesday and Thursday.

“The suspects, who were members of the Briquetting Panel, plotted their way to infamy on September 8, 2014, while carrying out a Briquetting exercise at the CBN Branch, Ibadan. In banking parlance, Briquetting is disintegration and destruction of counted and audited dirty notes. By this practice, depositor banks usually take mutilated notes to the CBN in exchange for fresh notes equivalent of the amount deposited.

“Instead of carrying out the statutory instruction to destroy the currency, they (the suspects) substituted it with newspapers neatly cut to Naira sizes and proceeded to recycle the defaced and mutilated currency,” said EFCC spokesperson, Mr Wilson Uwujaren

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