Court Orders Interim Forfeiture Of Mompha’s Designer Glasses, iPhone, Wristwatches
A Lagos Federal High Court on Wednesday, ordered an interim forfeiture of 11 high-end designer items confiscated from Ismaila Mustapha, a.k.a. Mompha, by theEconomic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
The items are: five luxury sunglasses, five luxury wristwatches, and an iPhone 8 that were seized from Mompha at his arrest by the EFCC on October 19, 2019 at the Nnamdi Asikiwe International Airport, Abuja.
Justice Lewis Allagoa made the interim order of forfeiture, after hearing an ex-parte application argued by EFCC counsel Chinenye Ugwoke.
He ruled that the order subsists pending the EFCC’s investigation of the respondents in the suit, Mompha and his company Ismalob Global Investment Limited.
The items are: a Dsquared sunglass; Tomford TF586 sunglass; Cartier B17C76B sunglass; Montblanc MB0045S sunglass; and a Louis Vuitton Z1186E sunglass. While the forfeited five wristwatches are a Rolex Oyster Perpetual; Audemars Piguet; Audemars Piguet-J46220; XY Hublot-1321920; and an XY Hublot-924206. And iPhone 8’s serial number is C8PVF1LKJC6C.
The EFCC supported its application with an affidavit deposed to by Mr. Bot Dachung, an Investigating Officer with the anti-graft agency.
Dachung in the affidavit stated that “the purpose of this application is to prevent the Respondents from tempering and/or dissipating the properties listed in the schedule to this application which are reasonably suspected to be proceeds of unlawful activities”.
He added: “If the properties listed in the schedule to this application are not temporarily and timeously forfeited, efforts of the ongoing investigation relating to internet/cyber-related crimes and possible prosecution would be brought to a nought”.
The EFCC told the judge that the items were “found in the possession of the 1st Respondent (Mompha), which property/asset is reasonably suspected to be proceeds of unlawful activities and presently in the lawful custody of the Applicant”.
According to the agency, a preliminary investigation revealed various intelligence reports linking Mompha with chains of internet/cybercrime activities.
It further alleged that there “have been concerted ongoing investigation activities against the Respondents with respect to the first Respondent’s (alleged) involvement in cybercrime activities.
“The properties listed in the schedule to this application were recovered from the 1st Respondent upon his arrest by the Operatives of the Applicant, hence this application.
“That efforts and attempts have been made by the first respondent through his legal representatives to retrieve the said properties listed in the schedule to this application”.
In a bench ruling, Justice Allagoa granted the order as prayed.
Justice Liman on October 12, 2020, dismissed Mompha’s ‘no case’ application in his case with the EFCC.
The judge held that the EFCC had established a prima facie case against Mompha, requiring him to explain himself.
Mompha, a social media celebrity and his company, Ismalob Global Investment have since November 25, 2019, been facing a 14-count N32.9 billion money laundering charge before Justice Mohammed Liman who has been transferred to another jurisdisction of the Court.