The Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Abuja, Justice John Tsoho, on Tuesday, ordered the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission ( EFCC) to unfreeze bank accounts belonging to the founder of Daar Communications Plc, Chief Raymond Dokpesi.
The commission had frozen the accounts of Dokpesi owing to his trial in an alleged N2.1 billion fraud said to have been illegally received from former President Jonathan’s National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd).
However, following the voiding of the charges by the Court of Appeal, the media mogul had approached the Federal High Court to unfreeze the affected bank accounts.
Delivering ruling in the suit, Justice Tsoho ordered the anti-graft agency to immediately unfreeze the accounts because the criminal charges which precipitated the restriction on the account had been dismissed and Dokpesi discharged and acquitted by the Court of Appeal.
According to the ruling, the federal government has no basis to put a post no debit order on the accounts in view of the subsisting and valid order of court.
The CJ added that since the appellate court delivered the judgment that invalidated the criminal charges against Dokpesi, the commission did not apply for a stay of execution, adding that in the absence of a stay, his court was bound by law to give effect and implementation to the judgment.
He thereafter ordered that the freeze order and ‘post no debit’ on the account be immediately removed in compliance with the appellate court decision.
On the claim by EFCC that it has gone on appeal to the Supreme Court, Justice Tsoho held that the notice of appeal filed at the apex court cannot in law stay the execution of the subsisting judgment.
He added that the anti-graft agency ought to have obtained a stay of execution of the judgment.
He also ordered that all documents seized from Dokpesi or voluntarily surrendered to the federal government be immediately returned to him.