Court Orders Arrest of Businessman Cletus Ibeto Over Alleged N4.8bn Fraud

A Lagos High Court sitting in Ikeja has ordered the arrest of the chairman/CEO of Ibeto Energy Development Company Cletus Ibeto over non-appearance in court to stand trial on allegations bordering on N4.8 billion fraud.

Justice Ismail Ijelu issued the bench warrant for his arrest on Friday.

The order followed a motion moved by the counsel to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Rotimi Jacobs.

The EFCC filed a 10-count charge of conspiracy, fraud, forgery and fraudulent use of documents against Ibeto and his companies, Ibeto Energy Development Company and Odoh Holdings Ltd.

The defendant’s arraignment was stalled on September 28 and October 5 due to his failure to appear in court, although he was represented by his lawyers.

On the two occasions, his lawyer Onyechi Ikpeazu informed the judge that his client was absent due to ill health. He, however, promised to produce him in court on November 3 but failed.

Jacobs claimed that the defendant was in Lagos and the commission could have arrested him, but it did not have the order of the court to do so.

Justice Ijelu adjourned the matter to November 15 for the arraignment of the defendant.

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