The Supreme Court has in a split decision of four-to-one set aside the conviction and sentencing to seven years imprisonment of Sen. Peter Nwaoboshi for alleged offences of fraud and money laundering.
In a lead judgment by Justice Emmanuel Agim, the apex court held that Nwaobishi and the two companies were unjustly and maliciously prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for committing no offence known to law, who subjected them to needless criminal trial in relation to civil transaction.
The court set aside the July 1, 2022 judgment of the Court of Appeal, Lagos, which had reversed their discharge and acquittal by a Federal High Court in Lagos
The apex court therefore ordered his immediate release from Ikoyi prisons in Lagos, where he is currently being held.
The Supreme Court also freed the two companies – Golden Touch Construction Project Ltd and Suiming Electrical Ltd – tried with him on a two-count charge brought against them by EFCC.
The EFCC had accused Nwaoboshi and his companies of illegally acquiring a property named Guinea House on Marine Road, in Apapa, Lagos, for N805 million, property said to belong to the Delta State Govt.
The anti-graft agency had claimed that part of the money paid for the property was transferred by Suiming Electrical Ltd on behalf of Nwaoboshi and Golden Touch Construction Project Ltd, adding that the funds are believed to be proceeds of their illicit activities.