A Lagos High Court in Igbosere has ordered the arrest of Nollywood actress Monalisa Chinda Coker over charges of tax evasion for the second time following her failure to show up in court since 2017.
Monalisa has been slapped with a two-count charge of failure to file annual tax returns and failure to pay income tax for the last 6 years in respect of her company, Monalisa Code Productions, which carries out its business from Lekki in Lagos state.
On January 21, an order was made by Justice Adedayo Akintoye, after an application by the Lagos State Ministry of Justice to the court alleging that Coker had failed to appear in court severally to answer questions on why she has allegedly failed to pay her income taxes.
Justice Akintoye granted the application and adjourned proceedings till February 2. But on February 2, the court heard that the bench warrant had yet to be effected.
It ordered that the warrant should continue and further adjourned proceedings till April 1st. When the case was mentioned, neither Coker nor her lawyer was present in court. The prosecuting counsel Babatunde Sumonu reminded the court that the bench warrant issued for her arrest is had still not been executed.
The judge consequently held that the bench warrant should subsist. She then adjourned the case until June 5 for further hearing. The actress cum producer has refuted tax evasion allegations against her, few days after a Lagos High Court order. A statement released through her lawyers, described as libelous and false, reports of tax evasion against her person.
Mrs Coker stated that she has never received any summons whatsoever from Lagos State Internal Revenue Service or from any Court, adding that, all businesses from which she earns income are based in Portharcourt, River State.