DSS recovers N93.5m,$530,087 from 3 arrested judges
“In one of the States where the Service operations were conducted, credible intelligence revealed that the Judge had Two Million United States Dollars ($2,000,000 USD) stashed in his house.
“When he was approached for due search to be conducted he, in concert with the State Governor, mobilized thugs against the Service team.
“The team restrained itself in the face of unbridled provocative activities by those brought in by the Governor; unfortunately, the Judge and Governor also engaged the tacit support of a sister security agency.
“The Service surveillance team noticed that upon frustrating the operation, the Judge with the active support of the Governor craftily moved the money to an unknown location which the Service is currently making effort to unravel.
“Meanwhile, large amount including foreign/local currencies have been recovered and summaries of these include:
NAIRA – N93, 558,000.00
DOLLARS – $530,087
POUNDS – £25,970
EURO – €5,680
“Other foreign currencies were also recovered; the above were recovered from just three of the judges.
“These in addition to other banking documents, including real estate documents have been recovered.”
According to the DSS, the new initiative to cleanse the judiciary of corrupt elements will be sustained while those found culpable will be prosecuted.
The DSS spokesman dismissed speculations that the operation was aimed at stopping Justice Walter Nkanu Onnoghen of the Supreme Court from succeeding Chief Justice Mahmud Mohammed who is due to retire next month.
He said the operation did not affect Onnoghen at all and he is not under any investigation whatsoever.
“The Service would want to clearly state that it has never invited Justice Walter Nkanu Onnoghen for investigation; neither is he being investigated by this Service,” Garba said.
“In addition, the Service would like to put it on record, that it has tremendous respect for the Judiciary and would not do anything to undermine it or its activities.
“The Service will also join hands with this noble institution in its fight to rid it of few corrupt Judges whose actions is undermining not only the Judiciary but the common bond of our national life.
“This current operation will be sustained and followed till sanity and sanctity is restored to the esteemed third arm of government and public confidence is regained.
“Members of the public are also encouraged to avail the Service of any information which could assist in this drive to rid our nation of corrupt practices and tendencies,” Garba said.
“We have all the records intact. In the residence of one of the Supreme Court justices, Justice Sylvester Ngwuta, about N35, 208,000 raw cash $319,475 and other hard currencies were found during the operation.
“The second, Justice Inyang Okoro had N4,350,000 cash and about $38,833.
“We have been able to trace about N1.5billion mansion to one of the arrested judges of the apex court.
“All the affected judges will be arraigned in court on Monday (tomorrow) with evidence against them.”
“In the case of Justice Pindiga, we have been conducting investigation on him in respect of alleged N500million inducement and two houses in Abuja.
“When confronted, he admitted and the confessional tape was forwarded to the CJN for consideration by the NJC.
“But interestingly, the NJC gave him a clean bill of health. No government will sit idly and allow such a judge to remain on the bench.
“We adopted due diligence in investigating these judges. Nigerians will hear more when their trial begins.”