Maina (file photo)
By Valentine Amanze
The Pension Reform Task Team (PRTT) former Chairman, Abdulrasheed Maina, has been sentenced to eight years imprisonment by the Federal High Court, Abuja.
In a judgement delivered by Justice Okon Abang on Monday, the court held that the prosecutor, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), produced essential evidence through witnesses to prove beyond reasonable doubt that Maina was guilty of money laundering in the sum of N171,099,000.
The court held that Maina stole over N2 billion belonging to pensioners, “most of whom have died without reaping the fruits of their labour”.
“I find the defendant (Mr Maina) guilty and convicted on counts 2, 6, 9, 3, 7 and 10″, Abang held.
While further delivering his judgement, Justice Abang found Maina guilty of concealing his true identity as a signatory to accounts opened in two banks (UBA and Fidelity bank), by using the identity of his family members without their knowledge.
These accounts had cash deposits of N300 million, N500 million, and N1.5 billion.
The court held that Maina stole monies meant for pensioners as he could not prove where he got them from.
Justice Abang also held that through Maina’s service as a civil servant, his salary and emoluments would not amount to the monies in the accounts.
The court also found Maina guilty for the purchase of a property in Abuja paid in cash in the sum of $1.4 million, which is above the statutory threshold of N5 million and without passing through a financial institution, describing it as a criminal offense.
But it was not yet clear whether Maina would forfeit the landed properties and also refund the money to the rightful owners or the government.