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EFCC Seizes Passports Of Air Peace Boss, Allen Onyema Over US Fraud Indictment

There are indications that the embattled Air Peace boss, Allen Onyema, may not be travelling out of Nigeria anytime soon.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has reportedy restricted the movement of Air Peace Chairman, Allen Onyema, by seizing his passports over alleged bank fraud and money laundering in the United States.

KanyiDaily had reported that Onyema was accused by the US Department of Justice (DoJ) of “moving more than $20 million from Nigeria through United States bank accounts in a scheme involving false documents based on the purchase of airplanes.

Onyema was indicted alongside his chief finance officer, Ejiroghene Eghagha, who is said to have committed aggravated identity theft in connection with the scheme.

The Nation reports that Onyema’s passports has been temporarily seized the EFCC because his presence will be needed by the anti-graft agency for the continuous investigative activities into his ongoing case with the United States (US) government.

“Following his interaction with our detectives, it became imperative to restrict his movement to the country because we will need him from time to time,” the newspaper quoted a source in the commission have said.

“We have seized his passports for an unfettered comprehensive investigation. And so far, he has cooperated with our team.

“During our interaction, he maintained his innocence. We have, however, made progress in our preliminary investigation.

“The extradition process is within the purview of the Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation. You should not forget that the EFCC has to investigate, establish prima facie case and arraigning the suspects in court before any extradition application can be initiated.

“The US government knows what to do as far as the invocation of the MLAT is concerned. We are only fulfilling our own part of the collaboration with the relevant US agencies.”

Meanwhile, Onyema has since denied the allegations against him and stated his readiness to travel to the US to defend himself.

Onyema said he is innocent of all charges and the US government will find no dirt on him because he has never conducted business with any illegalities.

The Air Peace boss said all the money transfer for the purchase of aircraft passed through the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and were all used for the same purpose.

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