UPDATED: Court orders Maina’s arrest, revokes his bail

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By Eric Ikhilae, Abuja

A Federal High Court in Abuja has issued bench warrant for the arrest of former Chairman of the defunct Pension Reformed Task Team (PRTT) Abdulrasheed Maina.

Justice Okon Abang, in a ruling on Wednesday, revoked the bail earlier granted Maina, who is being tried by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for alleged money laundering.

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Justice Abang ordered that Maina be arrested in any part of the country he may be found and brought to Abuja to face the trial.

The judge also ordered that the trial shall continue in the absence of the defendant.

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He gave the defendant’s surety, Senator Mohammed Ali Ndume up till November 23 this year to show cause why he should not forfeit the N500m bail bond he signed to ensure that Maina was always in court.

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The ruling was on the application made by lead prosecuting lawyer, Mohammed Abubakar, who argued among others that, since Maina has consistently failed to attend court since September this year, it was obvious he has jumped bail.

Ndume, who was on the last date, ordered to produce his the defendant on Wednesday, told the court that his efforts to locate Maina proved abortive.

The judge then adjourned till November 23 for Ndume to show cause and for the continuation of Maina’s trial in absentia.