The Special Fraud Unit, SFU, of the Nigeria Police has arraigned two church workers of Mountain of Liberation and Miracles Ministry (a.k.a. Grace Nation International or Liberation City) over an alleged thirteen million naira fraud.
The two church workers, Ms Success Ibilibor Udoka and Ms Prosper Chinonso Iheukwumere, were arraigned before Justice Hakeem Oshodi of a Lagos State High Court sitting in Ikeja for stealing church funds.
Arraigning the suspects on four count charges, the police, through their Head of Legal Department, Mr Emmanuel Jackson, who told the court that the police were ready for trial, urged the court to take their plea.
Both church workers pleaded not guilty to all the charges levelled against them.
Subsequently, their counsel, Mr Nicholas Akahabue, orally pleaded with the court to grant them bail on self-recognition and liberal terms.
Mr Akahabue told the court that he was willing to stand surety for the defendants if his prayer was granted and ensure that the suspects refunded the church before the trial ended.
In a reaction, the Police Counsel, Mr Jackson, who didn’t oppose the request, urged the court to grant them bail on a condition that would ensure they appeared for trial.
After that, Justice Oshodi granted the defendants bail on self-recognition and ordered that the defendants deposit the sum of five million naira with the court registrar within thirty days.
Similarly, the judge ordered the defence counsel to deposit his certificate of Call to Bar within thirty days with the court registrar as a guarantee to always present the defendants for trial.
However, Justice Hakeem Oshodi ruled that if they could not meet the bail conditions within the stipulated time, the defendants should forfeit the bail.
The matter was subsequently adjourned till May 19 for trial.