EFCC to court: Granting Binance executive’s bail plea a great risk

Binance in court

Binance executive, Gambaryan in court

By Taiye Agbaje

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC on Tuesday told a Federal High Court, Abuja that it would be a great risk to grant bail to detained Binance executive, Tigran Gambaryan, because he had no attachment to any community in Nigeria or competent person to stand as his surety.

EFCC lawyer, Iheanacho said this while opposing the bail application of Gambaryan filed by his lawyer, Mark Mordi, SAN.

The EFCC lawyer contended that Gambaryan attempted to apply for a new United States passport while in detention knowing fully well his International passport was seized by the Nigerian state.

The lawyer said he was a flight risk and that if granted bail, he would jump bail like his colleague.

He disagreed with Mordi that the commission had not provided credible evidence that Gambaryan was planning to escape.

He said going by the deposition in their counter affidavit, the deponent was one of the investigative team that investigated the case.

He urged the court to dismissed the bail application.

In the alternative, he advised the court to return the applicant to EFCC custody if the judge decides to grant him bail.

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However, Mordi told Justice Nwite to grant his client’s bail, arguing that the EFCC had failed to produce any credible evidence to oppose his application.

According to him, the complainant’s allegation that Gambaryan was arranging to escape from custody like his colleague was false.

“There is no exhibit or document displaying EFCC’s credible intelligence.

Justice Emeka Nwite fixed May 17 to deliver his ruling on the bail application after counsel for EFCC and Gambaryan adopted their processes and argued their case against and for the bail plea.

Thee judge had ordered the remand Gambaryan in Kuje Correctional Centre after he pleaded not guilty to the money laundering charges preferred against him by the EFCC.

The EFCC had accused Binance Holdings Limited, Gambaryan and Nadeem Anjarwalla, another agent of the company, of allegedly conspiring amongst themselves to conceal the origin of the financial proceeds of their alleged unlawful activities in Nigeria including $35,400, 000.

They were alleged to have committed an offence contrary to Section 21 (a) and punishable under Section 18(3) of the Money Laundering (Prevention and Prohibition) Act, 2022, among others.

However, Anjarwalla escaped from lawful custody on March 22 and fled Nigeria for Kenya.

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