By Phebean Ogundapo
Justice Muhammed Lima of Benin division of Federal High Court sentenced Michael Igbinedion, son of Gabriel Igbinedion, a Benin based billionaire to six years imprisonment today over alleged laundering of N25 billion fund belonging to Edo state government.
Justice Lima also sentenced Patrick Eboigbodin, an aide to the former governor Lucky Igbinedion to 20 years imprisonment, in addition to a fine of N250,000 on a 10-count charge.
?Igbinedion, Eboigbodin and four companies were arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on an 81 count-count charges bothering on money laundering.
The four companies are Gava Corporation Limited, Romrig Nigeria Limited, PML Securities Company Limited and PML Nigeria Limited, addressed as the third to sixth accused persons, the offence was said to have been committed between 1999 and 2007 when Lucky Igbinedion was governor of the state.
PML Securities Limited, one of the companies allegedly used by the convicts to launder the funds, was ordered to fold up and forfeit all its assets to the federal government.
Michael Igbinedion, a younger brother to former governor Lucky Igbinedion, was sentenced to two years imprisonment on each of the three count charges. He was however given an option of N3 million fine and Eboigbodin was sentenced to two years each on 10 counts.
? Justice Liman noted that the prosecution proved the alleged collaboration beyond reasonable doubts but discharged all the accused persons on other counts on the ground that the prosecution failed to prove the allegations, he said the prosecution only proved suspicion and failed to prove illicit origin of funds deposited in some banks.
All the jail terms of the convicts are to run concurrently.
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