The Federal High Court in Lagos today granted bail of N250m to an aide of Senate President Bukola Saraki, Gbenga Makanjuola, who was charged with an alleged fraud of N3.5bn.

Justice Babs Kuewumi granted Makanjuola, who is Saraki’s Deputy Chief of Staff, the bail with two sureties in like sum alongside co-defendants, Kolawole Shittu and Obiorah Amobi, who were equally granted bail in the same conditions.

Recall that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission had on October 3 arraigned Makanjuola, Shittu, Amobi and a firm Melrose General Services Limited on 11 counts bordering on conspiracy and money laundering.

Granting them bail, Justice Kuewumi said the sureties must be resident in Lagos and own landed properties, whose Certificate of Occupancy they must be ready to submit to the court’s registrar, pending the determination of the case, adding that the sureties were to show evidence of tax payment in the last three years as well as submit a letter of identification from bank.

Also in Lagos, five suspected members of a trans-border robbery gang who were fleeing Ogun state, after a successful operation, were arrested by the State Police Command.

It gathered the gang of nine, stormed a haulage company’s warehouse, where they hacked one of the private guards with matchets before tying his legs and hands, consequently, two of them posed as guards at the gate to wade off intruders, others, loaded their operational vehicle, a Volvo truck with number plates KRD 515 XR, in which they loaded goods from the warehouse and zoomed off.

However they fell out of luck on entering Lagos as operatives of the Rapid Response Squad of the command, who were stationed at Toll Gate border of Ogun and Lagos states suspected the movement of their vehicle.

Hence, the vehicle was chased to Meiran junction, where it was forced to stop.  Suspected leader of the gang, Ahmed Ibrahim, (33) a Cameroonian, and four others identified as Kelechi Nebu (30), Ndueso Sunday (45), Tochukwu Egemuka (33) and Obinna Oforkaja (30), were subsequently arrested.

Items recovered from the gang include: 13 unit of truck tyres, one refrigerator, 26 gallons of 4 litre engine oil, 24 gallons of 25 litres of engine oil, two batteries, assorted charms, one cutlass and two knives.

Sharing his experience with the gang, the haulage company’s security guard, Kenny Peters said, “I was doing the rounds when they held me from the back. They wanted to shoot me first but one of them cautioned them that it won’t hurt me. They macheted me in the forehead and beat me with all manners of rods including truck wheel spanners. They tied my hands to the back and carried me to one fence, thinking I was dead.

“They looted the company’s store and were set to go when I woke up. I hung on to the back of the truck from Dalemo, Sango Ogun State to Toll Gate, where I saw RRS Team. I alerted them and they chased the truck to Meiran Junction, where they were forced to stop. Four of them fled while 5 were arrested.”

The guard identified the gang’s leader as the brother of the haulage firm’s former security guard, whom he alleged stole about 100 truck tyres from the company in August 2018.