By Joseph Undu
There was drama at the Lagos State Police Headquarters, Ikeja, recently, when a lawyer (names withheld) openly accused his client of plotting to kill his opponent.
The lawyer, who claimed to have spent about 27 years at the Bar, alleged before bewildered policemen attached to Inspector-General of Police Tactical Squad from Abuja, that his client gave him N200,000 with a promise of giving him more after assassinating his opponent, a Lagos-based businessman.
Police sources said the revelation came up while the IGP’s team was interrogating the businessman based on a petition written by the General Manager of a micro-finance bank.
The businessman had earlier dragged the General Manager of said micro-finance bank to the Federal Anti-Robbery Squad, Adeniji Adele, Lagos, alleging that the banker diverted his $140,000 after a business transaction.
He further alleged that he instructed the bank to transfer the sum to his business partner in China in 2014, but that the micro-finance bank failed to carry out his instructions only to turn around and accuse a second generation bank of failure to adhere to instructions to halt the transfer.
According to him, the micro-finance bank’s MD converted the money into personal use only to make frivolous allegations against him and the second generation bank.
The case, which lingered for years after being investigated by different police formations including the Federal Anti-Robbery Squad, FEDSARS, Adeniji-Adele, Lagos, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Lagos, and the Public Petitions Committee of the House of Representatives, came up again after the Managing Director of the micro-finance bank petitioned the Inspector-General of Police, accusing the businessman of being involved in dubious arrangement with the bank to frame him up.
It was learned that based on these allegations by both parties, the IGP’s tactical team waded into the matter.
The case, it was gathered, took a dramatic turn after one of the counsel hired by the Managing Director of the micro-finance bank openly accused his client of paying him to assassinate the businessman.
According to police sources, the lawyer stated categorically before policemen that: “My client advanced N200,000 to me as logistics for the said assassination and when it failed, he flew into Abuja to know why it did not take place as planned.
“I started playing along with him in the presence of two witnesses and informed him that the assassins insisted on additional N1.5 million before they strike. I also informed the would-be victim of this ugly development.’’
When contacted, the lawyer refused to comment on the development, but referred Vanguard to those investigating the case.
However, the businessman stated: “It was shocking to hear this revelation by his own lawyer. I will simply leave the police to do their job diligently and thoroughly to ensure that justice is done in this case and my money recovered.”
Efforts to reach the Managing Director of the microfinance bank failed as he was said to be out of town when Vanguard visited his office in Apapa.