In Abeokuta, the capital of Ogun State, an Ogun State High Court arraigned Oladipupo Adebutu on seven charges related to money laundering and other offenses. This case, with number AB/10c/2023 (FRN Vs Adebutu &Ors), stems from allegations of criminal inducement during the gubernatorial election held on March 18, 2023.
Adebutu, who was the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate in the election, is accused of ordering the issuance of 200,000 preloaded ATM cards with N10,000 each through his bank. These cards were allegedly distributed across the state on the day of the election with the intent to influence voters.
Initially charged alongside six others, Adebutu left the country for several months and returned in December 2023. During the court proceedings, the prosecuting counsel, Mr. Rotimi Jacobs, withdrew prior information and substituted it with amended information, to which there was no objection from the lead counsel for the defendants, Chief Gordy Uche.
All defendants pleaded not guilty to the charges. Chief Gordy Uche requested that the bail conditions for some of the defendants remain unchanged. He further asked the court to grant Adebutu bail on self-recognizance, highlighting that Adebutu voluntarily appeared in court.
However, the prosecuting counsel opposed granting Adebutu bail on self-recognizance, suggesting alternative bail conditions. Eventually, the presiding judge, Justice Abiodun Akinyemi, granted bail to Adebutu in the sum of N1 million with a surety, who may be a family member or bondsman. The case was adjourned until February 7, 2024, for further hearing.