The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission ( ICPC) on March 24, 2014 arraigned Professor David Iornem before a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja for allegedly operating two illegal Universities.
Joined alongside Iornem in the suit are Island Open University and CommonWealth University Inc.
The ICPC had in August 2013 arraigned Iornem before the same court. But at the resumed sitting on Monday a fresh 14-count charge was slammed on the accused for allegedly operating illegal universities.
In the charge, the ICPC counsel, Barrister Ebenezer Shogunle alleged that the accused person conspired with one Bruce Duncan and other persons at large to obtain money by advertising on the internet seeking for Consultant/Academic Adviser for admissions into Commonwealth University Belize when he knew that no such University existed contrary to and punishable under section 8(a) and section 1(a) of the Advance Fee fraud and other fraud Related Offences act 2006.
Prof. Iornem was further accused of attempting to induce one Prof. Ishaq Oloyede to pay the sum of $11,550. (Eleven thousand, five hundred and fifty United States Dollars) for the award of an academic doctorate degree for a non-existing University contrary to and punishable under 8(b) and (1) (1) (b) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006.
The accused person was also accused of obtaining the sum of $5000 from one Akinkuotu Albert Oluwatoyin “under the false presence that he had been offered admission to pursue a degree of doctor of Philosophy in Management in a non- existing University – (Commonwealth University), contrary to and punishable under section 1 (1) (a), and section 1 (3) of the advance fee fraud and other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006.
He was further accused of defrauding Jamilu Rabiu Sani of $800 “as application form fee and good faith deposit for admission into Commonwealth University Belize” which is neither accredited nor authorized to operate as a University in Belize.
Prof. Iornem also collected the sum of N1million from one Festus Uwakhemen Asikha; $6,800 from one Chief Victor Ekpo Effiom for admission onto the Commonwealth University Belize, “which is in fact a fake and un accredited University, owned and illegally operated by him, contrary to and punishable under section 8(b) and 1 (1) (a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and other Fraud related Offences Act, 2006.
Several other charges were read to him which on matters which were punishable under section 15(1) (a) (ii) and section 15 (1) (b) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act 2011.
When all the 14 Court Charges were read to the accused person, he pleaded not guilty and his Counsel Chris Anlashi appealed to the Court to grant his client Bail.
The trial Judge, Justice A.R. Mohammed granted the accused person bail on N100,000 with a surety in like sum. The Judge said that the surety should be a civil servant of not lower than Grade level 8 and the surety must swear to an affidavit of means and must submit his passport photograph.
The case was adjourned till 14th May 2014 for hearing. The Judge directed that the accused should be taken to Kuje Prisons pending the fulfilment of bail conditions.