CityNews Nigeria reports that Abidemi Rufai, a suspended aide to Ogun State Governor Dapo Abiodun will be arraigned on fraud charges before a United States Courthouse, in Tacoma, Washington (U.S.), on June 8.

He will appear before U.S. magistrate Theresa Fricke.

The development followed a federal grand jury ratification of the charges involving conspiracy, wire fraud and “aggravated identity theft”.

Rufai allegedly used the identity theft as a scheme “to steal over $350,000 in unemployment benefits from the Washington State Employment Security Department.”

A grand jury in the U.S. is a group of citizens empowered by law to conduct legal proceedings, investigate potential criminal conduct, and determine whether criminal charges should be brought.

Nine counts of wire fraud and five counts of aggravated identity theft were ratified by the grand jury against Rufai, it was learnt.

Acting Attorney, Tessa Gorman, in a letter seen by this newspaper on Monday, informed the suspect’s lawyers, Lance Hester and Michael Barrows, that Mr Rufai would be arraigned by 9:00 a.m. on June 8, 2021.

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“It will be necessary that you and your client be present at the time and place indicated above, or via video or teleconference as directed by the Court. The indictment and other documents related to this case are available on the Court’s Electronic Docketing System,” the letter read in part.

At the end of a detention hearing on May 19, the Magistrate of the District Court for the Eastern District of New York, Ramon Reyes, agreed with the government that Rufai posed “a serious flight risk”, but found that the risk could be addressed by conditions of release, including a $300,000 bond.

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