Air Peace CEO react to $20million fraud indictment.
Air Peace reacts to $20 million fraud indictment, ‘it’s false and I’ll see them in court’
By Aluta News
AIR PEACE Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Allen Ifechukwu Athan Onyema has reacted to the charges of US$20 million fraud being levelled against him by United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia, as false and that has never laundered any money whatsoever as every aircraft bought was transacted through the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
The USAO said it charged the chairman with bank fraud and money laundering for moving more than $20 million from Nigeria through United States bank accounts in a scheme involving false documents based on the purchase of airplanes.
Also charged with bank fraud and committing aggravated identity theft in connection with the scheme is Ejiroghene Eghagha, the airline’s chief of Administration and Finance.
According to Onyema, he has never conducted business with any illegalities and he was willing to defend his innocence in the United States court
He said, “Thank you for reaching out to me. I can confirm to you that all allegations are false and are in no way in line with my character as a person and as a business man whose only aim has been to build Nigeria and improve wellbeing.
“As the press statement clearly stated, these are indictment that only contains charges. I am innocent of all charges and the US government will find NO dirt on me because I have never conducted business with any illegalities.
“Be rest assured that I also have my lawyers on this and these mere allegations will be refuted.
“I never laundered money in my life, neither have I committed bank fraud anywhere in the world. Every Kobo I transferred to the US for aircraft purchase went through the Central Bank of Nigeria LC regime and all were used for the same purpose. The American companies that received the funds are still in business. I never took a penny from any US bank or Nigerian bank. I am willing to defend my innocence in the US courts,” He said.
United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia, said it has charged Allen Ifechukwu Athan Onyema, chairman, CEO, and founder of Air Peace, with bank fraud and money laundering for moving more than $20 million from Nigeria through United States bank accounts in a scheme involving false documents based on the purchase of airplanes.
Ejiroghene Eghagha, the airline’s chief of Administration and Finance, has also been charged with bank fraud and committing aggravated identity theft in connection with the scheme.
Allen Ifechukwu Athan Onyema, 56, of Lagos, Nigeria, and Ejiroghene Eghagha, 37, of Lagos, Nigeria, were indicted on November 19, 2019, on one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud, three counts of bank fraud, one count of conspiracy to commit credit application fraud, and three counts of credit application fraud.
Additionally, Onyema was charged with 27 counts of money laundering, and Eghagha was charged with one count of aggravated identity theft.
Members of the public are reminded that the indictment only contains charges. The defendants are presumed innocent of the charges and it will be the government’s burden to prove the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt at trial.