The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Wednesday at an Ikeja High Court, arraigned Mohammed Yunusa, a suspended judge of the Federal High Court Lagos on charges of corruption.
Justice Yunusa was arraigned alongside Esther Agbo, a staff in the law chambers of Rickey Tarfa, SAN.
Mr Yunusa was charged with a four-count charge of attempted perversion of the course of justice and corruption by a public official, while Agbo was charged with offering gratification to a public official.
They denied the charges.
According to A.B.C Ozioko, EFCC prosecutor, Yunusa had constant and confidential communications with Tarfa, who was handling three lawsuits marked FHC/L/CS/714/2015, FHC/L/CS/715/2015 and FHC/L/CS/716/2015 before him.
The prosecution alleged that Yunusa collected a gratification of N1.5 million from Tarfa for the purpose of giving favourable rulings and judgments in the cases.
The judge is also being accused of receiving N750, 000 from Joseph Nwobike, SAN, between March and September, 2015, to get “favourable” judgment in cases.
The EFCC alleged that Agbo, the second defendant who is a staff of Rickey Tarfa and Co., on May 14, 2015 paid the N1.5 million allegedly from Tarfa into Yunusa’s UBA account number 1005055617.
The prosecutor noted that the offences are in violation of Sections 64(1)(a) and 97(3) of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2011.
After the charges were read, counsel to justice Yunusa, Mr I. Mohammed requested for bail for the judge on self recognisance.
“We have filed a bail application dated December 12 and on January 9, we have served the EFCC, seeking bail on self recognisance,” Mohammed said.
Counsel to Agbo, Mr John Odubela, SAN, the second defendant asked the court to grant his client bail on liberal terms because she’s a nursing mother.
“We will be asking the court for bail for the second defendant on the grounds that she is a nursing mother who just gave birth via cesarean section,” he said.
The presiding judge, Sherifat Solebo in a ruling, granted Yunusa bail on self recognisance while Agbo was granted one million naira bail with two sureties in like sum.
Mrs Solebo adjourned the case until February 20 for trial.