The Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, has granted the former governor of Benue State, Gabriel Suswam bail in the sum of N500 million naira after the Federal Government arraigned him on a fresh three-count charge, bordering on illegal possession of firearms and money laundering.
The trial judge, Justice Babatunde Quadiri of the Federal high court stated that the surety, who must be a resident of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), should also swear to an affidavit of means and that the surety’s residential address must be verified by officials of the court.
The surety, the court held must also submit one passport photograph with the court as part of the bail conditions for the former governor and adjourned the matter till October 24 and 25, 2018.
Although the ex-governor Suswam pleaded not guilty to the three-count charge when they were read to him. The prosecution counsel, Abubakar Alilu, prayed the court for a date to commence trial and that the court should order the remand of the former governor in prison pending the hearing and determination of the charge against him.
He was also accused of, converting 25 designer wrist watches worth several millions of naira being properties he derived directly from corruption and concealed in his vehicle thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 15 of the Money Laundering Act.
The Federal Government, in the charge filed on June 26, 2018, accused the former governor of illegally concealing weapons in his Mercedes Benz car with Registration at the Maitama, area of Abuja, an offence, the Federal Government said is contrary to Section 3 of the Firearms Act Laws of Federation of Nigeria 2004.
He was arraigned two weeks after the Department of State Services (DSS) arrested him allegedly over security issues in Benue state Nigeria.