A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos State has ordered the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to return all seized items belonging to Ismaila Mustapha popularly known as Mompha.
The federal high court Judge, Justice Liman, however noted that the EFCC has the right to seize a property during an arrest, likewise a duty to approach the court for an interim order, although due process must be observed and failure to do this is considered illegal.
Justice Liman stated as follows;
“None of these items was listed as exhibit, none of the items was listed on the charge. At this stage, there is nothing on record that the items seized is being investigated on.
“The retention of the property without compliance with due process violates the requirements of Section 29 of the Act”
“Failure to release the property is illegal. As at today, no charge has been filed regarding the items. It is too long to withhold the applicant properties.”
Justice Liman who ruled on a July 6 application filed by Mompha’s counsel, Mr Gboyega Oyewole (SAN), ordered the return of the items which include five luxury wristwatches, an apple iPod, an iPhone 8 device and a pair of sunglasses. They are reportedly among the items found on him during his arrest last October 19, in Abuja.