Photo: Francis Atuche
Court orders forfeiture, freezing of ex-BankPHB MD Atuche’s N19.1 billion in 24 banks
A lagos State High Court has ordered the forfeiture and freezing of the assets and funds to the tune of N19,178,253 050 billion allegedly kept in 24 banks by the convicted former Managing Director of the defunct Bank PHB, Francis Atuche.
The trial judge, Justice Lateefa Okunnu, gave the order on Friday, following an application against Atuche and Ugo Anyanwu dated August 17 by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission in charge No. ID/1549/2011.
“An order is made restraining the first defendant (Atuche) whether by himself, or acting through the persons or entities listed or such other persons, including but not limited to his family members or agents, from removing, alienating, disposing of, dealing with or diminishing the value of assets, proceeds of economic and financial crimes or otherwise in the name of the first defendant…” Justice Okunnu held, while granting the forfeiture order.
The Judge also noted that the assets or funds included those held indirectly by or for Atuche’s benefit, whether solely or jointly held in Nigeria or worldwide.
The judge further froze any bank account being run and operated by Atuche “personally or jointly, whether in his personal name or otherwise.