A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos on Friday discharged Senator Peter Nwaoboshi of the N322million money laundering charge filed against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Justice Chukwujekwu Aneke held that the commission could not prove the elements of the offence for which the anti-graft agency charged the lawmaker.
Nwaoboshi, who represents Delta North on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party, was arraigned in 2018, by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on two counts of money laundering.
Charged along with the senator were two companies – Golden Touch Construction Project Ltd and Suiming Electrical Ltd.
He had pleaded not guilty to the charge and was granted bail.
He was alleged to have acquired a property described as Guinea House on Marine Road in Apapa, Lagos, for the sum of N805 million.
The prosecution said that N322 million of the purchase sum formed part of proceeds of an unlawful act. It said that the sum was transferred to vendors by order of Suiming Electrical Ltd.
Nwaoboshi had pleaded not guilty to the charge and was granted bail.
Delivering judgement on Friday, Justice Aneke first read out counts of the charge for which the defendants were arraigned and then reviewed evidence as tendered by witnesses, as well as evaluated essential ingredients of the counts.
He held that the evidence led by the First Prosecution Witness (PW1), Prince Kpokpogri, was based on a call from an anonymous person, adding that he did not tender the documents supplied to him by the said anonymous person who was not called as a witness to testify.
The judge held that the evidence of the first prosecution witness could therefore only qualify as hearsay.