By Idebaneria Cynthia
A Legal practitioner, Kole Bello, who allegedly forged a land Certificate of Occupancy (CofO), was Monday charged before a Lagos High Court in Igbosere.
Bello alongside three others, Chukwu Victor, Friday Palmer and Osumah Terry, were arraigned before Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo on three counts of conspiracy, fraud and forgery.
State Counsel R. O. Aroyewun said the defendants committed the alleged offences sometime in December 2001, at Lekki Peninsula Scheme 1, Lagos.
According to Aroyewun, the defendants conspired and forged a C of O with reference no. 63/63/1989, dated September 28, 1989, “with the intent that it may be acted upon as genuine.”
The defendants, he alleged, forged the said C of O to take over a plot of land belonging to the Estate of the late Mrs Francisca Awolaja.
He said they forged the document and arranged for someone to impersonate the late Awolaja in other to fraudulently convey her land to one Mr Rotimi Olubeko for the sum of N5 million.
The offences, Aroyewun added, contravened Sections 422, 423 and 467 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2003.
The defendants pleaded not guilty.
Their counsel, F. O. Udokporo, asked the court to allow them to continue enjoying the bail initially granted them by the court.
The defendants were granted administrative bail by the court last July following their arrest on a bench warrant.
Upholding Udokporo’s application, Justice Taiwo adjourned till November 15 for trial.