An accountant, on Monday, told an Ikeja Special Offences Court how the chief executive officer of Lionstone Offshore Services Ltd. and his wife allegedly converted $4.7 million to their personal use.
The accountant, Mr Godwin Okon, testified against Amaechi Ndili and his wife, Njide, who are facing a three-count charge bordering on stealing and fraudulent conversion of money to personal use.
Okon, also a business analyst, told the court that the defendants entered into a contract with Hercules Offshore Nig. Ltd.
According to the witness, after executing the contract, the defendants converted part of the proceeds to their personal use.
The witness was led in evidence by ACP Simon Lough (SAN).
He said that Addax Petroleum Development Nigeria had a contract with Lionstone Offshore Services Ltd., which was executed by Hercules based on an agreement jointly written on Jan. 14, 2010.
“Sometime in December 2009, Amaechi came to Hercules to discuss the possibility of collaboration between the two companies to team up and carry out some contracts in the Nigeria oil and gas field.
“The first defendant had based his reason on the expertise and experience of Hercules company, and by Jan. 14, 2010, a joint bidding agreement was entered into and some terms were spelt out,” he said.
The witness told the court that Lionstone was responsible for submission of tenders and receiving of payments, while Hercules was responsible for providing technical information and financial information.
He said: “Some other joint bidding agreements were fees spelt out.
“Lionstone will be entitled to a one-time flat fee of $75,000 on the execution; then an annual amount of $150,000, for three years.
“The contract was entered into by Lionstone and Addax in October 2010, but it was executed by Hercules based on an agreement.
“When there is payment, the payment will go to the Lionstone account; then, Lionstone, on receiving such the amount, will remit the net amount after taking two per cent.
“Lionstone paid the invoices from Addax from the inception of the execution of the contract, up till June 2012, to Hercules.
“From July 2012 to September 2013, Lionstone did not remit any money again.
“Based on the invoices, after Lionestone had failed to remit the money to Hercules and after making calls and nothing happened, our senior management went to Addax to inquire, and it was from there that we were told that Addax had paid all the invoices to Lionstone and that they were not owing Lionstone any money,” the witness said.
NAN reports that the police had on Oct. 19, 2022 arraigned the couple alongside Lionstone Offshore Services Ltd. on a three-count charge.
The couple, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.
The police allege that the defendants committed the offences from July 2012 to September 2013 at Lionstone Offshore, off A58 Road 2, Victoria Garden City, Lagos State, and Lionstone Offshore Services Ltd. at No. 38/39 Bull Plaza 19, Floor Marina, Lagos.
The alleged offences contravene Sections 516, 387 of the Criminal Code, Laws of the Federation, 2004.
Justice Olubummi Abike-Fadipe adjourned the case until Jan. 31 for continuation of trial.