The Federal High Court in Lagos has ordered the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to show cause why it should not be restrained from arresting Managing Director of Carlisle Properties, Mr. Kennedy Izuagbe.
Justice Mohammed Yunusa directed that the status quo be maintained until the commission appeared in court on October 12.
EFCC, last Thursday, declared Izuagbe, who manages Senate President Bukola Saraki’s property company, wanted.
Izuagbe is wanted for alleged N3.6 billion money laundering.
He was alleged to have conspired with others to launder the money as the managing director of the defunct Societe Generale Bank.
EFCC’s Head of Media and Publicity Wilson Uwujaren said the 45-year-old banker was declared wanted because he could not be reached by the anti-graft agency.
But in an ex parte application, the applicant’s lawyer Efot Okoi prayed the court to stop the EFCC as well as its Director of Operation, Olaolu Adegbite, from further unlawful harassment and intimidation of Izuagbe and the firm’s directors.
The lawyer said Izuagbe’s intimidation was unconstitutional, null and void and a gross violation of his fundamental rights as guaranteed by sections 34, 35 and 37 of the 1999 Constitution.
Okoi argued that until the hearing/determination of the motion on notice, the EFCC and its agents should be restrained from intimidating Izuagbe and Carlisle Properties.
He also asked the court to stop the commission from carrying out any unlawful arrest and detention of the applicants, their agents and associates.
The lawyer prayed for an order setting aside an invitation from EFCC to Izuagbe and Carlisle Properties pending the hearing and determination of the substantive suit.
According to him, Izuagbe was only head of Internal Control at the SGBN and was never directly involved in loan approval.
Justice Yunusa, in his ruling on the ex-parte application, ordered that the status quo be maintained.
He said EFCC should be put on notice.