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Ibadan: EFCC Secures Conviction of Fraudsters, Arraigns Three

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Justice Sherifat Adeyemi of the Oyo State High Court, Ibadan, on Wednesday, sentenced one Balaji Salami to prison for fraud.

The convict was prosecuted by the Ibadan Zonal Office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on amended one-count charge of obtaining money by false pretence, contrary to Section 419 of the Criminal Code Cap 38, Laws of Oyo State 2000.

The charge read: “That you Bolaji Salami sometime in March, 2020, at Ibadan, within the jurisdiction of this honourable court, with intent to defraud, obtained various gift cards, worth the sum of USD$150 (One Hundred and Fifty United States Dollars) from one Smith Johnson, a white male American citizen, when you falsely represented to him that you are a white female American by name Angelina James, that you are in love with him and wanted to marry him, which representations you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence.”

He pleaded guilty to the offence following which the judge pronounced him guilty as charged and sentenced him to six months imprisonment with effect from his June 30, 2020 date of arrest.

Apart from his prison term, he would restitute his victim, the sum of $150 USD (One Hundred and Fifty United States of American Dollars) and forfeit his iPhone X Max, Itel mobile phones and HP laptop computer to the federal government.

Similarly, Justice Patricia Ajoku of the Federal High Court, Ibadan, on Wednesday, October 14, sentenced one Olanrewaju Isaac Olatunji (a.k.a. Mia Cruz) to one year imprisonment for fraud. He was prosecuted by the Ibadan Zonal Office of the Commission on amended one-count charge of criminal impersonation.

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The charge read: “That you Olanrewaju Isaac Olatunji (a.k.a. Mia Cruz) sometime in May 2019 at Ibadan within the jurisdiction of this honourable court with intent to defraud, knowingly impersonated one Mia Cruz, a white female, when you falsely represented yourself to Abigail Mccaroll, in order to gain advantage for yourself, contrary to Section 22 (2) (b) (ii) of the Cyber Crimes (Prohibition, Prevention Etc) Act, 2015, and punishable under Section 22 (2) (b) of the same Act.”

He pleaded guilty to the charge upon which prosecution counsel, Mabas Mabur asked the court to sentence and convict him accordingly.

The judge sentenced him to one year imprisonment with effect from February 13, 2020, day of his arrest. His is also to restitute the sum of $1600 (One Thousand Six Hundred United States Dollars) to his victim through the EFCC, and forfeit his Honda Crosstour and other items recovered from him to the federal government.

Meanwhile, the Ibadan Zonal Office of the Commission also yesterday, arraigned the trio of Adedapo Olayiwola, Adebola Aderonke Adesina and her company, Kestrel Travels and Tour Limited, before Justice Sherifat Adeyemi.

Olayiwola is being prosecuted on a five-count charge of obtaining money by false pretence, contrary to Section 1 (2) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1 (3) of the same Act.

He is alleged to have fraudulently obtained over N4 million (Four Million Naira) from different victims on the pretence that he has plots of land to sell to them.

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However, the victims, with time, discovered that the said plots of land did not belong to him.

“That you Olayiwola Adedapo sometime in 2016, in Ibadan within the jurisdiction of this honourable court, with intent to defraud obtained the sum of N1,400,000 (One Million Four Hundred Thousand Naira) from one Monsuru Watiu Adekunle under the pretext that it is the purchase price for two acres of land, situated at Oyigun Village, Akinyele, Ibadan which you claimed belong to you, which representations you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1 (1) (a) and punishable under Section 1 (3) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act 2006.”

He pleaded “not guilty” to the charges, upon which prosecution counsel, Murtala Usman asked the court for a commencement date of trial and for him to be remanded in prison custody.

Justice Adeyemi admitted Olayiwola to bail in the sum of N5million and two sureties in like sum. The sureties are to provide a valid means of identification, verified by the EFCC. He was given seven days to comply with the bail conditions or be returned to EFCC’s custody. The case was adjourned till December 2, 2020.

Adesina, on her part, was arraigned alongside her company on one-count charge of stealing, contrary to Section 390 of the Criminal Code Law, Cap 38, Laws of Oyo State, 2000.

She was alleged to have fraudulently obtained the sum of N2,400,000 (Two Million, Four Hundred Thousand Naira) from one Adeniyi Taiwo Dauda through her company on the pretence that she could help him procure visas for some of his clients. She, however, failed to deliver on her promise and refused to refund the money to her victim.

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The charge read, “That you, Adesina Adebola Aderonke and Kestrel Travels and Tours Limited sometime in February, 2019 at Ibadan, within the Ibadan Judicial Division of this honourable court, did commit an illegal act, to wit: stealing of the sum of N2,400,000.00 (Two Million and Four Hundred Thousand Naira) only, property of Adeniyi Taiwo Dauda.”

She pleaded “not guilty” to the charges, prompting prosecution counsel, Murtala Usman to ask the court for a commencement date of trial and for the defendant to be remanded in prison custody.

The court ordered that she be remanded in EFCC’s custody, pending an application for her bail and adjourned the matter till October 20, 2020 for hearing.

 

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Crime & Court

Osogbo: 32-year-old Man Jailed 14 Months for Defrauding American of N19.6m

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Ibadan zonal office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has secured the conviction of one Oteyowo Akinkunmi Samuel over internet-related fraud.

Justice Nathaniel Ayo-Emmanuel of the Federal High Court sitting in Osogbo, Osun State pronounced the 32-year-old, who claimed to be a graduate of civil engineering, guilty of a one-count amended charge of criminal impersonation on Monday, and handed him fourteen months custodial sentence.

The crime offends Section 22(2) (b) (ii) of the Cyber Crimes (Prohibition, Prevention Etc) Act, 2015 and punishable under Section 22 (2) of the same Act.

He was charged for defrauding one Warren Doht, an American, of a total sum of N19,664,128.50 (Nineteen Million, Six Hundred and Sixty Four Thousand, One Hundred and Twenty Eight Naira, Fifty Kobo).

The convict had, however, approached the Commission for a plea bargain agreement which formed the basis for the amended charge with which he was arraigned and convicted of on Monday.

After pleading guilty to the amended charge, prosecution counsel Murtala Usman urged the court to convict him accordingly.

Apart from the jail term, the court also ordered Oteyowo to restitute the N19,664,128.50 to the victim of his crime.

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Crime & Court

#EndSARS: Oyo judicial panel to begin public sitting next week Tuesday

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The 12-man Judicial Panel of Inquiry set up by Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State to look into petitions of police brutality and victimisation in the state will begin public hearing next week Tuesday.

The Panel, after concluding preliminary analysis of complaints/petitions submitted by victims of police brutality/victimisation, will begin the public hearing on Tuesday, 26 January, 2021 at the House of Chiefs, Oyo State House of Assembly Complex, Secretariat, Ibadan from 9.00 a.m. daily. 

According to a public notice signed by the Secretary to the Panel, Mr. H.T. Salami, all petitioners and respondents had been served with hearing notices and they are expected to appear before the Panel on the date contained in their respective hearing notices.

The panel, which warned members of the public coming to the hearing to adhere strictly to COVID-19 protocols and guidelines, asked members of the public who might have enquiries to direct same to the The Secretary of the Panel through Phone Number 07014868686 or via email address: [email protected]

The notice read: “The general public is hereby informed that His Excellency, the Governor of Oyo State, Seyi Makinde, has graciously approved the constitution of a twelve (12)-man Judicial Panel of Inquiry to look at the petitions submitted by victims of police brutality and victimization in the State.

“The Governor inaugurated the Commission on Tuesday , 10th November, 2020 with the following Terms of Reference: to receive and investigate complaints of Police brutality or related extrajudicial killings; to evaluate evidence presented/other surrounding circumstances and draw conclusions as to the validity of the complaints; to recommend compensation and other remedial measures, where appropriate.

“The Panel has, therefore, concluded the preliminary analysis of the submitted complaints/petitions and the public hearing of the Panel will commence on Tuesday, 26 January, 2021, at the House of Chiefs, Oyo State House of Assembly Complex, Secretariat, Ibadan from 9.00 a.m. daily. 

“All the petitioners and the respondents have been served with hearing notices and are expected to appear before the Panel on the date contained in the respective hearing notices.

“All enquiries are to be directed to the The Secretary of the Panel through Phone Number 07014868686 or via email address: [email protected]

“Please, note that all members of the public coming to the hearing are expected to adhere strictly with the COVID-19 pandemic protocols and guidelines.”

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Crime & Court

Barman in Ibadan gets 8 years jail term for illegal withdrawals from employer’s account

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A 35-year-old bartender, Godwin Job, was on Tuesday sentenced to eight years in prison for illegally withdrawing the sum of N1,079,290 (One million, Seventy Nine Thousand, Two Hundred and Ninety Naira) from a Fidelity Bank account belonging to his boss, Olufemi Joseph Odusanya.

Job was convicted by Justice Bayo Taiwo of the Oyo State High Court in a two-count charge bordering on stealing, filed against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibadan zonal office.

Following an investigations into a petition from his estranged boss, the Commission arraigned Job on August 17, 2020 to answer for the criminal allegations against him.

The charges are: “Godwin Job (a.k.a Nifemi) “M’ sometime in August 2019 or there about, at Ibadan, within the jurisdiction of this court did steal an Automated Teller Machine (ATM) Card, property of Olufemi Joseph Odusanya, and thereby committed an offence Punishable under Section 390 (9) Criminal Code, Cap 38, Laws of Oyo State 2000.”

“Godwin Job (a.k.a Nifemi) “M’ sometime in August 2019 or there about, at Ibadan, within the jurisdiction of this court did steal the sum of One million, Seventy Nine Thousand, Two Hundred and Ninety Naira (N1,079,290), the property of Olufemi Joseph Odusanya, and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 390 (9) Criminal Code, Cap 38 Law of Oyo State 2000.”

The boss had accused Job of stealing his Automated Teller Machine (ATM) card through which he withdrew cash and made Point of Sales (POS) transactions totaling N1,079,290.

In the course of investigation, the Commission discovered that Job made 14 transactions within two hours to evacuate the said amount from the victim’s account.

Though he pleaded not guilty upon arraignment, the judge held that the prosecution was able to convince the court beyond reasonable doubt that the accused indeed committed the unlawful act.

He then found him guilty as charged and sentenced him to four years in prison in each of the charges, which will run concurrently from the day of conviction.

He also ordered that Job refunds the money stolen to his victim.

                                                

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