Court orders arrest and extradition of Marcus Wade and two other foreigners for alleged theft of $42 million from Nigerian bank.
ABUJA – On January 17, 2023, the Federal High Court that was sitting in Lagos before Justice Akintayo Aluko issued a warrant for the arrest and extradition of three foreign nationals. Their names are Prem Garg, Devashish Garg, and Marcus Wade, and they are accused of committing fraud against a Nigerian bank in the amount of US$ 42,485,900.00 (Forty-Two Million Four Hundred and Eighty-Five Thousand, Nine Hundred Dollars).
One of the leading commercial banks has filed a petition with the Department of Public Prosecutions, Federal Ministry of Justice, Abuja, stating that the Company (Agrico Agbe Limited and Wilben Trade Limited, Dubai) had requested a loan facility from them for the importation of Rice in 2015. The petition states that the three individuals have been accused of engaging in fraudulent activity.
According to the documents that this Newspaper was able to obtain, the bank reportedly opened letters of credit for the importation of rice in the amount of USD 42,485,900.00 in favor of Wilben Trade Limited in Dubai.
The bank stated that it had reason to believe that the Company had made a request for an Import Finance Facility loan (IFF) in order to finance the importation of parboiled rice from India to Nigeria, and that this loan had been approved by the bank. In accordance with the terms of the agreement, the facility was to be repaid in large part with the proceeds of sale realized from the sale of imported products in addition to other revenues realized from the operation of the business.
Wilben Trade Limited Dubai, Marcus Wade, and three other individuals have been indicted on five counts of conspiracy, obtaining by false pretense, cheating, and criminal conversion in charge number FHC/L/562C/2022, which was filed on October 7th, 2022, before the Federal High Court in Lagos. The indictment was issued by the Attorney General of the Federation after taking into consideration an investigation report from the INTERPOL NCB.
Having heard a motion for the issuance of warrant of arrest in first instance moved by the prosecuting counsel (Pius Ukeyima Akutah Assistant Director in the office of the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice with A.S. Bello, the Presiding Judge Hon. Justice Akintayo Aluko considered it deserving and granted the warrants for the arrest of Marcus Wade, Prem Garg, and Devashish Garg with the view to and for the purpose
According to the information that has been made available to our Correspondent, Wilben Trade Limited Dubai and its founder were complicit in the fraud committed against the bank. This was evidenced by the fact that Wilben Trade Limited Dubai willfully and deliberately communicated to the bank that the commodities (Indian Parboiled Rice) for which the letter of credit was established have been supplied and shipped to Nigeria, despite knowing or having reason to know that there was no such commodity shipped to Nigeria. Wilben Trade Limited Dubai also aided and