Chief Whip of the 9th senate, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu has been released from Kuje Custodial Centre, Abuja where he was serving a 12-year sentence following an order to that effect by the Federal High Court in Lagos.
Justice Mohammad Liman of the Federal High Court in Lagos ordered the release of Kalu on Tuesday following his conviction last December for alleged looting of N7.65b belonging to Abia.
The judge ordered his immediate release after his lead counsel, Lateef Fagbemi (SAN) moved the application seeking his release.
The former Abia state governor was released around 7:30pm.
Kalu’s lawyers said the Senator representing Abia North Senatorial District was released without delay as soon as the order of court was served on the custodial officials.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) did not oppose the application.
Consequently, Justice Mohammad Liman granted the application as moved. Although the Supreme Court had on May 8 nullified Kalu’s trial alongside Ude Jones Udeogu and his company, Slok Nigeria Ltd, he was not permitted to benefit from the judgement because he was not the applicant.
As a result, Kalu filed a separate application dated May 12, 2020 before the Federal High Court in Lagos asking the court to set aside his trial, conviction and sentence for 12 years imprisonment on 39-count charges of money laundering to the tune of N7.6 billion when he was governor between 1999 and 2007.