By G9ija

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), yesterday amended the criminal charges it filed against a former Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Mr. Bello Adoke (SAN), Mr. Aliyu Abubakar and five others over their alleged roles in the multi-billion dollar Malabu Oil scam.

Following the amendment of the charges, the defendants were then re-arraigned before a High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) on a 42 count charge.

Those arraigned alongside Adoke and Abubakar included Mr. Rasky Gbinigie, the Malabu Oil and Gas Limited, the Nigeria Agip Exploration Limited, the Shell Nigeria Extra Deep Limited and the Shell Nigeria Exploration Production Company Limited.

The anti-graft agency had earlier arraigned the defendants before Justice Idris Kutigi of the FCT High Court in Gwagwalaga, Abuja, on January 23, 2020.

But when the matter came up yesterday, the Prosecuting Counsel, Mr. Bala Sanga, told the court that the EFCC had filed an amended charges dated January 18, 2021 against the defendants and urged the court to allow the charges to be read for them to take their fresh plea.

Thereafter, the charges were read to the defendants who pleaded not guilty.

Thereafter, Sanga asked for a date for commencement of trial.

Based on agreement of the parties, Justice Kutigi adjourned the case till April 14-15 for hearing and ordered Adoke, Aliyu and Gbinigie to remain on bail earlier granted them by the court.