BY OLUGBENGA SOYELE, Lagos
Justice Nicolas Oweibo of the Federal High Court in Lagos Wednesday admitted a compact disc containing an analysis of the contents of the phone of controversial musician, Azeez Fashola, popularly known as Naira Marley.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) is prosecuting Naira Marley over allegations of conspiracy, possession of counterfeit cards and fraud.
He, however, pleaded not guilty to the 11-count charge.
At the last sitting of the court, the counsel to the anti-graft agency had attempted to tender the compact disc, through its counsel, Bilkisu Buhari but the move was opposed to by the defence counsel, Olalekan Ojo (SAN).
Ojo had argued that that the IPhone which was analysed had already been admitted in evidence by the court.
But in his ruling on Wednesday, Justice Oweibo admitted the compact disc stating that the exhibit met all the rules of admissibility.
He held, “I have considered the agreement of both parties as well as the ground for the objection, I consider the C.D to be admissible in view of the nature of this case and the evidence of other prosecution witness.
“Accordingly it is hereby admitted in evidence and marked exhibit F,” the judge ruled.
However, the trial was stalled due to the absence of the defence counsel.
Ojo had written to the court seeking an adjournment for undisclosed reasons.
The request was not opposed to by EFCC’s counsel Bilkisu Buhari.
Following the development, Justice Oweibo adjourned further hearing of the matter to March 8, 2021.
The anti-graft agency had on May 20, 2019 arraigned Naira Marley, alleging that some of the credit cards discovered in his residence bore the names Nicole Louise Malyon and Timea Fedorne Tatar.
EFCC maintained that the offences contravenes Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act and the Cyber Crimes Act.