The sum of N280,555,010.65 said to be “warehoused” in the bank accounts of Invictus Oil and Gas Limited and Invictus Investment Limited has been permanently forfeited to the Federal Government of Nigeria, a Federal High Court in Lagos ordered on Thursday.
The firms are allegedly owned by Obinwanne Okeke, popularly known as Invictus Obi. He is currently standing trial in the United States of America over an alleged $11m cyber fraud.
Justice Rilwan Aikawa, who had on October 9 ordered the temporary forfeiture of the money, made the forfeiture order following a motion by the EFCC.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had told the court that the two firms were owned by Obinwanne Okeke, “a strong leader of a cyber crime syndicate that specialised in business e-mail compromise.”
At the resumed hearing on Thursday, EFCC lawyer, Rotimi Oyedepo, informed the court that the anti-graft agency had published the interim forfeiture order as directed by the court and there was no opposition.
Justice Aikawa then ordered the N280m to be permanently forfeited to the Federal Government.
The judge held, “I have seen the application seeking the final forfeiture of the sum of N280.5m warehoused in the two bank accounts, which was reasonably suspected to be proceeds of unlawful activities.
“I am satisfied that the requirements enumerated under Section 17 of the Advance Fee Fraud and other related Offences Act have been met by the applicant in this suit; consequently, this application is hereby granted as prayed, as it remains unchallenged.
“The sum of N280.5m found in the bank account of Invictus Investment limited, who is the second respondent in this suit, is hereby forfeited to the Federal Government of Nigeria.”