The absence of Justice Babs Kuewumi of a Federal High Court, Lagos, Wednesday, stalled the trial of former Managing Director of Nigerian Airspace Management Agency, Ibrahim Abdulsalam, over N6.8bn fraud.
Abdulsalam, alongside six others, is charged for allegedly stealing and converting the agency’s N6.8bn to personal use.
The six others are Adegorite Olumuyiwa, Agbolade Segun, Clara Aliche, Joy Adegorite, and two companies – Randville Investment Ltd and Multeng Travels and Tours Ltd.
The case was fixed for continuation of trial on Wednesday but the absence of Justice Kuewumi, who is attending a conference in Abuja stalled continuation of the trial.
Their trial will now continue on November 8, 9, and 10 respectively.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission had on April 7 arraigned the former NAMA boss, three directors of the agency and the wife of one of the directors.
The charge was subsequently amended to include three more accused persons, while all were re-arraigned on April 12.
They again pleaded not guilty to the charges, and were admitted to a bail of N20m each with two sureties each in like sum.
The EFCC had alleged that on August 19, 2013, the accused conspired to induce NAMA to pay N2.8bn to three companies – Delosa Ltd, Air Sea Delivery Ltd and Sea Schedules Systems Ltd.
It was alleged that the payment was under the pretext of clearing NAMA’s consignments.
It was also alleged that between January 2 and December 17, 2013, the defendants appropriated N191m belonging to NAMA as well as converting N728m and other sums between 2013 and 2015 to personal use.
The offences contravened the provisions of Sections 1 (3) and 8 (a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006.