Money Laundering: Court Jails Courier Over $80,000 Cash

Money Laundering: Court Jails Courier Over $80,000 Cash

Yesterday, a Federal High Court sitting in Kano convicted one Umar Musa Kibiya who was prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for failing to declare the money on him to the Customs at the Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport.

According to a statement signed by Wilson Uwujaren, EFCC’s acting head, media and publicity, "The convict was arrested for failing to declare the $80,000 found on him. He only declared $40,000 to Customs".

Kibiya was arraigned on January 14, 2013, before Justice Fatu Riman of the Federal High Court sitting in Kano on one count charge that borders on currency under declaration. The charge sheet reads: "That you, Umar Musa Kibiya, 'male' on or about 17th October 2012 at Aminu Kano International Airport, Kano within the Jurisdiction of the Federal High Court while transporting cash the sum of US$80,000 (eighty thousand US dollars only) from Nigeria to Cairo, Egypt, falsely declared to the Nigeria Custom the sum of US$40,000 (forty thousand dollars only) instead of said sum of US$80,000 (eighty thousand dollars) as required under Section 12 of the Foreign Exchange (Monitoring and Miscellaneous Provisions) Act Cap F 34 Laws of the federation of Nigeria 2004 and Section 2(3) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011, and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 2(5) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011".

The accused pleaded guilty to the charge.

The prosecuting counsel, Aisha A.T Habib, read out the punishment for the offence under section 2 (5) of the Money Laundering Act, 2011: "That any person who falsely declares or fails to make declaration to the Nigerian Custom Service pursuant to section 12 of the Foreign Exchange (Monitoring and Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, commits an offence and shall be liable on conviction to forfeit not less than 25% of the undeclared funds or negotiable instrument or to imprisonment of not less than 2 years or both".

The defence counsel, N. Maiyaki, pleaded with the court for a light punishment for the accused, claiming that he was a first offender and the bread winner for his family.

Justice Riman who reserved ruling for Tuesday January 15, 2013, convicted the accused and ordered him to forfeit 50% of the undeclared sum, which is $ 20,000.

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