On 26 April, 2017 the respondent filed an ex-parte application before the Federal High Court, Lagos in Suit No. FHC/L/CS/640/17 seeking an order of interim forfeiture of the sum of $5,842,316.66 (Five Million, Eight Hundred and Forty- Two Thousand, Three Hundred and Sixteen United States Dollars and Sixty Cents) in account No. 2110001712 domiciled with Skye Bank Plc in the name of Dame Patience Jonathan and the total of N2,421,953,522.78 (Two Billion, Four Hundred and Twenty-One Million, Nine Hundred and Fifty-Three Thousand, Five Hundred and Twenty-Two Naira, Seventy-Eight Kobo) in account No. 2022000760 domiciled with Ecobank Nigeria Ltd in the name of La Wari Furniture and Baths Ltd. The respondent also sought for an Order of the Court directing the publication in any national newspaper of the order under reliefs 1 and 2 above for the respondents or anyone who is interested in the property sought to be forfeited to appear before the Court to show cause within 14 days why the final order of forfeiture of the monetary properties mentioned in reliefs 1 and 2 should not be made in favour of the Federal Government of Nigeria.
The grounds upon which the application was brought were:-
(a) That this Honourable Court has statutory powers under the provisions of Section 17 of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, 2006 to grant the reliefs sought.
(b) That the monetary properties sought to be attached are reasonably suspected to be proceeds of unlawful activities.
The application was said to be an action in rem. The Federal High Court granted the application. Dissatisfied with the Order of the Federal High Court, the appellants filed a Notice of Appeal on 3 May, 2017 which was later amended on 18 September, 2017. The name of the 2nd appellant was struck out from the Notice of Appeal. The appellant was granted leave to appeal on mixed law and facts. After hearing arguments on 6 November, 2017 the Court of Appeal adjourned for judgement.
The judgement was delivered on 12 January, 2018 dismissing the appeal. The appellant, being dissatisfied with the decision of the Court of Appeal, filed a further appeal to the Supreme Court.