Three central bank officials and two staffers at Nigeria’s Zenith Bank appeared in court on Thursday to face criminal charges stemming from a 1.97 billion naira ($9.9 million) currency fraud case, authorities said.
Nigeria’s Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC), an anti-corruption body, said the bank employees were detained after being arraigned in the southwest city of Ibadan on theft and fraud charges.
It said the officials pleaded not guilty to the charges and the court had ordered their detention pending bail applications.
The EFCC has charged six central bank officials and nine commercial bank staff since Tuesday for stealing huge sums of mutilated naira currency notes meant to be exchanged for new notes.
Zenith Bank was not immediately available for comment.
The central bank regularly withdraws old or torn notes from circulation to replace them with new ones. Officials said the alleged scheme had no impact on money supply or inflation, which has hovered around 8.7 percent since April.
Culled from Reuters