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CRIME

Police Arraign 4 For Defrauding Ex-lawmaker Of $1.362m, N46.5m

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The Special Fraud Unit (SFU) of the Lagos Police Command yesterday re-arraigned four men before the Federal High Court, Lagos for allegedly obtaining the sum of $1.362 million and N46. 533 million from a former member of the House of Representatives, Hon. Eseme Eyiboh under false pretence.

The four men: Izekor Ogiemonyi, (alias, Prince Joshua Akenzua), Stephen Victor, (alias James Ajayi); Bolade Babatunde, (alias Honourable Lawal Adewunmi), and Alhaji Jimoh Saka, (alias Tola Ajayi) were docked before Justice Muslim Hassan by the police on a six-count charge of conspiracy and fraud.

According to the police, the accused persons and others now at large, between June 2016 and August 2017, at Jatoz Royal Hotel, Osolo Way, Ajao Estate, Lagos, conspired among themselves, and presented themselves to one Hon Eseme Sunday Eyiboh, a former member of the House of Representative from Eket Federal Constituency, Akwa Ibom State, as accredited representatives of International Foreign Exchange Monitoring Agency/Bureau, in Nigeria.

The police further alleged that the accused persons fraudulently collected the sum of $1.362 million in three tranches of $1.230 million, $20, 000, and $112, 000, and the sum of N46, 533 million, from the lawmaker, with the pretence that they can use their position to deliver vehicles and industrial machines at affordable and official exchange rates.

The police also alleged that the fourth accused persons, Alhaji Jimoh Saka, alias, Peter Ajayi, supplied others accused persons with the bank accounts domiciled in First Bank Plc, Diamond Bank, and First City Monument Bank (FCMB) into which the sum of N46. 533 million was paid into by Hon Eyiboh.

The offences according to the prosecutor, Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP) E A Jackson, are contrary to Sections 8(a), 1(1)(a) and 8(9), and punishable under Sections 1(3) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, No.14 of 2006.

All the accused persons, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.

Following their not guilty plea, their lawyers urged the court to grant the accused persons bail in the most liberal terms.

But the application was opposed to by the prosecutor, who urged the court not to grant the bail application.

CSP Jackson particularly objected to the third accused person, Bolade Babatunde, alias, Honourable Lawal Adewunmi, bail application, submitting that he has no means of livelihood, and that he is a danger  to the society.

After listening to the submissions of both parties, Justice Hassan, adjourned the matter till January 19, for ruling on the bail application, while he fixed February 19, for the commencement of trial.

The judge however ordered that the four accused persons be remanded in prisons custody, pending the determination of their bail application.





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