The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Monday 20 February, 2017, arraigned one Marcel Amadi before Justice Dugbo Oghoghorie of the Federal High Court, Enugu, on a three count charge bordering on illegal operation of financial services and issuance of dud cheque to the tune of N25, 100,000.00 (Twenty Five Million,One Hundred Thousand Naira Only) without any valid license contrary to section 2(1)of the Banks and Other financial Institutions Act, Cap B3, Laws of the Federation, 2004 and Punishable under Section 2(2) of the same Act.
It was alleged by a petitioner that the suspect Marcel Amadi is in the business of offering financial services to clients through his company, M.A and Sons Commission Agents Nigeria which though registered with an Enugu magistrate court,was not licensed with neither the state government nor Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to operate such financial business.
Investigations carried out revealed that he is a ‘money lender,’ who collects money from clients at an agreed interest rate and lends out such funds to other clients also at an agreed interest rate.
However, his ordeal started when after over a period of three months, he stopped the payment of interest on a N25 Million naira investment pumped into the business by the petitioner and could not also refund the principal amount.
It was further revealed that in order to ward off pressures from his creditor, the accused person who had held the invested fund since 2010, had issued six cheques to the complainant all of which were returned unpaid for insufficient funds.The accused pleaded not guilty to the three counts charge preferred against him.
One of the counts read:
That you Mr. Marcel Amadi (TRADING UNDER THE NAME AND STYLE OF M.A AND SONS COMMISSION AGENTS NIG) between 2005 to 2015 at Enugu within the jurisdiction of Federal High Court of Nigeria, carried on banking business by accepting cash deposits from members of the public without a valid license from the Central Bank of Nigeria and thereby committed an Offence Contrary to Section 2(1) of the Banks and Other Financial Institutions Act, Cap B3 Laws of the Federation, 2004 and Punishable under Section 2(2) of the same Act.
In view of the accused person’s plea, the prosecuting counsel Barr. Rotimi Ajobiewe applied for a short date for trial. The defense counsel Barr. I.M Ugwu, pleaded that his client continues with the administrative bail earlier granted him by EFCC.
Justice Dugbo having granted Amadi his prayer, adjourned the matter to 14th Mach, 2017 for trail.