Reverend Fathers Silas Nweke and E.C. Obiorah were on Wednesday arraigned before a Federal High Court sitting in Awka, the Anambra State capital, for allegedly attempting to swindle some people in a cement deal. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission arraigned the priests on a 35-count charge in suit no FHC/Awka/75C/2012, bordering on obtaining by false pretences, popularly known as 419.
The two catholic priests among other charges, were accused of obtaining money by false pretences huge sums of money from certain persons and issuing them dud cheques, using the name of Holy Family Group of Companies in a cement deal some years ago. The EFCC was represented by two prosecution counsel, Joshua Saidi and Henry Anaso, while N. H. Osunkwo represented the first accused person and C. J. Asiegbu represented the second accused person.
Rev. Fr. Nweke’s counsel challenged the jurisdiction of the court to entertain the matter, contending that the matter had been heard at different times at the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court; while Asiegbu, the counsel for Obiorah, who is the second accused person, told the court that a state High Court in Awka had delivered a judgment in the matter in which the Holy Family Group of Companies and the accused persons were defendants.