Justice Muslim Sule Hassan of a Federal High Court in Lagos on Thursday recused himself from the trial of Femi Fani-Kayode, a former aviation minister, charged on allegation of laundering N4.6 billion.
His withdrawal followed an application filed by Fanu-Kayode's lawyer, Mr Norrison Quakers (SAN), urging the court to step aside from the trial.
Quakers had contended that Justice Hassan, who worked as Head of Legal services at the EFCC before his appointment as a judge, signed the money laundering charges for which Fani-Kayode was previously prosecuted years back.
The Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) had arraigned Fani-Kayode on 17 counts, alongside Esther Nenadi Usman, a former finance minister and one Yusuf Danjuma for the alleged fraud.
Justice Hassan while ruling on the application said although counsel had not been able to show or prove any element of bias, it will serve the interest of justice for him to withdraw from the trial.
The judge also held that the case file will be returned to the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Ndahi Auta, for re-assignment to another judge.
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