The case of Ismaila Mustapha, commonly known as Mompha, a suspected online fraudster who was charged in absentia before Justice Mojisola Dada of a Special Offences Court, Ikeja, has been postponed till November 16, 2022.
Despite the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission’s best efforts to have Mustapha detained, his trial will go forward without him.
During the proceedings on Wednesday, the prosecution attorney, A O Mohammed, said that the commission had made a desperate attempt to apprehend the defendant.
He said, “We had also written letters to our counterpart to secure the presence of the defendant in this Honourable court. My Lord, we will be asking for another date to enable the prosecution of the defendant on trial in absentia.
In agreement with the prosecution, Mr. Gboyega Oyewole, SAN, Mr. Kolawale Salami, and Ademola held briefs for the defense counsel. They confirmed the commission’s position and requested an adjournment.
Justice Dada adjourned further trial till November 16, 2022, admonishing the commission to bring his witnesses in the next sitting.
In the meantime, the defendant had previously received a bench warrant from the judge for failing to show up in court for the trial.
Mustapha and his firm, Ismalob Global Investment Limited, are both being sued by the EFCC on eight counts of conspiracy and money laundering offenses totaling more than N6 billion.
The EFCC detained Mustapha on January 10, 2022, before arraigning him and granting him bail.
However, he missed two of the scheduled court dates for his trial, which forced the court to extend the case.