The Federal High Court, Abuja has admitted Femi Fani-Kayode to bail in the sum of N50 million and one surety in like sum.
The court, however, remanded him in Kuje Prison pending the perfection of his bail condition.
Fani-Kayode was arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) before Justice John Tsoho on a fresh five-count charge bordering on money laundering.
The ex-aviation minister was accused of allegedly collecting N26 million from the office of the former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki and using the money for media campaign.
Count two of the charge reads: “You, Femi Fani-Kayode, converted N26 million cash paid from the office of the National Security Adviser for the purpose of media campaign.
“You ought to have reasonably known that the said funds formed part of an unlawful act contrary to section 15 (2) (b) of the Money Laundering Act.”
His counsel, Mr Ifedayo Adedipe (SAN) in arguing his bail application, told the court that his client had been kept in EFCC custody in the last 21 days without a warrant of arrest or detention from the court.
Adedipe called the court’s attention to a sister case where his client allegedly misappropriated N1.2 billion but had been granted bail and had not breached the terms of his bail.
He also said that the offence his client was accused of was a bailable one and urged the court to admit him to bail on self recognition or on liberal terms.
The prosecuting counsel, Mr Johnson Ojogbane, however, argued that even though, the defence had filed the bail application before the arrest and arraignment of the defendant, he responded to the application in good faith.
“Ordinarily, we should not have responded to the bail application since it was filed long before today, but out of respect to this honourable court and in good faith, we have decided to respond,” Ojogbane said.
While admitting that the defendant had been in the EFCC custody in the last 21 days, he said that the arrest and detention was for the sole purpose of bringing him before the court according to the constitution.
Justice Tsoho, in his ruling, agreed that the offence the defendant was accused of was bailable.
Tsoho said that the fears expressed by the prosecution in their counter affidavit that the defendant was a flight risk and was likely to temper with evidence were only speculative.
He also said that there was no evidence to show that when the defendant was granted bail in the sister case or that he breached the conditions of his bail.
Tsoho, therefore, set in the conditions for bail to include that the defendant would deposit his travel documents with the court.
Others are that the surety must be resident in Abuja, own landed property and produce the original documents of the property for citing and inspection.
Justice Tsoho also ordered that the defendant and sureties must produce two recent passport photographs and adjourned for commencement of trial till Dec. 25.
Fani-Kayode pleaded not guilty to the charges levelled against him.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Fani-Kayode is already facing a 17-count charge of money laundering before the Lagos division of the court. (NAN)