Musa Pam, Jos
A Federal High Court in Jos on Tuesday sentenced former Minister of Water Resources, Hon. Sarah Ochekpe and two others to three months imprisonment after being found guilty of a N450 million fraud.
The court also sentenced Raymond Dabo and Leo Jitung to three months imprisonment each.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had charged them in 2018 with conspiracy and money laundering.
Delivering the judgement, Justice Musa Kurna, however, gave the convicts an option to pay a fine of N1 million each.
Ochekpe, Dabo and Jitung had entered a plea of no case submission.
While sentencing the convicts, the judge held that after withdrawing the said amount from the bank, they did not keep the money for themselves but delivered same to a governorship candidate, as such were not guilty of retaining the sum for themselves.
Kurna however said they were guilty of withdrawing the N450 million which he said was above the threshold of an individual withdrawal.
He said, the offence , which contravened the provisions of Section 16(1) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act 2013 as amended, an offence which carries a minimum of three years imprisonment or a N10 million fine.
The judge, however, in his discretion sentenced them to three months imprisonment each or an option of a N1 million fine each.