Retired Premier League star Sam Sodje was allegedly involved in channelling proceeds from an email banking scam which targeted companies in Colombia, India, Italy and Abu Dhabi.
Sam and brother Efe– both former Super Eagles players– are on trial at the Old Bailey alongside two other men Emmanuel Ehikhamen and Andrew Oruma.
Ehikhamen, 42, of south-east London; Oruma, 49, of Bexley, south London; Efe, 35, Cheadle, Greater Manchester; and Sam, 38, of Dartford, Kent, all deny money laundering.
There is no suggestion that the four were involved in the actual fraud, but a senior member of the Sodje family, who pleaded anonymity, declined comments on the issue “until the matter is settled.”
“We can’t comment now but my brothers will come out unscathed,”
Sodje, who played for Reading in the EPL, is accused of laundering proceeds from the international scam.
It is alleged the group was involved in an arrangement to receive and pass on money which had been obtained by the frauds and keeping some as a financial rewards.
The prosecution claim victims were sent emails which they thought came from suppliers to whom they owed money, but the emails provided new, false, bank details to which the money should be sent.
Prosecutor Julian Christopher QC told jurors that money was sent to accounts belonging to Ehikhamen and Akpo Sodje, another brother of Efe Sodje and Sam Sodje.
AkpoSodje now lives in Dubai and has declined to return to Britain to be interviewed by detectives. The offences allegedly took place across a month in November 2013.