Suspended Accountant-General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris was re-arraigned on Tuesday on a 14-count charge bordering on stealing and criminal breach of trust to the tune of N109.5b.
Idris was re-arraigned with three others before a new judge of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) in Maitama, Justice Yusuf Halilu.
The other defendants are Godfrey Olusegun Akindele (a Technical Assistant to Idris); a director in the office of the AG-F, Mohammed Kudu Usman and a firm linked with Idris – Gezawa Commodity Market and Exchange Limited.
Idris and others were earlier arraigned on July 22 before Justice Jadesola Adeyemi-Ajayi, who sat as the court’s vacation judge.
The case was later reassigned to Justice Halilu after the court’s vacation.
They pleaded not guilty when the charge was read to them on Tuesday, following the defendants’ lead lawyer, Chris Uche (SAN) applied that they should be allowed to continue to enjoy the earlier bail granted them by the former judge on July 28.
Uche said the defendants have dutifully complied with their bail conditions.
Prosecuting lawyer, Oluwaleke Atolagbe did not object to the request that the defendants be allowed to remain on the earlier bail.
Atolagbe said the prosecution would allow the court to exercise it’s discretion on the issue.
Ruling, Justice Halilu noted that bail is a constitutional right of a defendant.
The judge added that having been previously granted bail by the court, he is favourably disposed to allowing the defendants to remain on the early bail granted them by the court.
He ordered among others, that the defendants should submit their international passports to the court’s Registrar and adjourned till November 23 for the commencement of trial.