P&ID pleads guilty to 11 count charge as court orders closure, forfeiture of assets

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has filed 11 count charge against Process and Industrial Development Limited (P&ID) and P&ID Nigeria Limited.

The two firms recently secured a British court ruling that Nigeria owed the Irish firm about $9 billion for violating terms of the contract.

The ruling prompted investigation by the EFCC into the contract. Those familiar with the story said it was designed to fail as key elements necessary for its success was missing.

The defendant who had their representatives in court did not object to the 11 count charges brought against them when it was read in their presence, Thursday.

They pleaded guilty to all the charges brought against when arraigned at a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja and presided over by Justice Inyang Ekwo who convicted them.

They pleaded guilty to intent to defraud by obtaining property from the Cross River State government, and a second count of obtaining land from the state government with the intent to defraud, as well as ‘count three’ for conspiring with certain individuals to commit a felony by dealing with petroleum product without the appropriate licence.

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The defendants also pleaded guilty to ‘count four’ which was a similar charge to ‘count three’, as well as pleaded guilty to counts five, and count six which bordered on the charges of tax evasion.

They pleaded guilty to count seven, and count eight of concealing the origin of over N3 million operated by P&ID when they knew that the money formed part of proceeded of an unlawful act.

The companies pleaded guilty to count nine that between January and December 2009, they concealed the unlawful origin of over N2 million in a commercial bank when they reasonably ought to know that the proceeds formed part of their unlawful act of tax evasion.

They pleaded guilty to concealing the origin of over N1 million in a commercial bank operated by P&ID when they ought to reasonably know that it formed part of proceeds of tax evasion by the company.

The defendants also pleaded guilty to the last ‘count 11’ for failing to comply with the requirements of submitting a declaration of their activities to the Ministry of Trade and Investment.

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“An order is hereby made for the second convict to be wound up and its assets forfeited to the Federal Government,” Justice Ekwo ruled.