The trial of Naira Marley, the singer, over alleged cybercrime, was stalled on Monday at the federal high court in Ikoyi, Lagos following the absence of the judge.
Nicholas Owiebo, the trial judge, was said to be attending a judges’ conference.
Naira Marley is being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on 11-count charges bordering on conspiracy and credit card fraud.
The anti-graft agency charged Naira Marley with cyber fraud on May 14, 2019.
The singer was consequently arraigned on May 20, 2019, before Oweibo but he pleaded not guilty.
The court had accordingly granted him bail of N2 million, with two sureties in like sum.
The trial resumed last month — at about the same time when a magistrate court sitting in Yaba held that Naira Marley be remanded in police custody for 21 days in relation to Mohbad’s death.
On October 6, Oweibo issued a warrant of arrest on the defendant following his absence from the trial.
During the court sitting, Olalekan Ojo, the defendant’s counsel, had prayed to the court for an adjournment of the trial.
Ojo said Naira Marley was absent from court because he was in police custody.
However, Bilkisu Buhari, the prosecution counsel, told the court to issue a production warrant against Naira Marley to ensure his presence on the next adjourned date.
The presiding judge granted the prayers of the prosecution counsel and issued a production warrant against the defendant.
The judge later adjourned the trial to October 30 but the Lagos police failed to provide the singer before the court.
Consequently, Oweibo announced November 13 and 30 for the next hearings.
Following the judge’s absence, the trial will now continue on November 30.
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