The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Ibadan Zonal Office, on Tuesday, secured the conviction and sentencing of 17 internet fraudsters to various jail terms.
According to a statement by the Head, Media and Publicity, Dele Oyewale, in Ibadan, Oyo State capital, the fraudsters were jailed between January 8 and 28 after being arraigned before Justice Olusola Adetujoye of the state High Court, Ibadan and Justice A.A. Babawale of the Ogun State High Court, sitting in Abeokuta on a separate one-count charge each.
The convicts are Akinbode Abiodun, Samad Owolabi, Ademola Quadri, Evewiekpoamare Jackson, Adeagbo Adegbenro, Adesanya Dare, Yusuf Olaoluwatobi, Akinbode Joshua, Musa Olorunnisola and Lawal Segun.
Others were Moses Bugama, Odude Ayomipo, Bashiru Adeyinka, Ochoche Ochola, Nurudeen Quam, Afeez Jimoh and Olowookere Sobbur.
One of the charges read, “That you Adesanya Dare ‘m’ on or about 24th May 2023, at Ibadan, Oyo State, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, fraudulently impersonated by representing yourself to be a white man by the name Daryl Huffman from United States of America to one Angie Shepard, through your Facebook account with email address: [email protected], and other pretences, which pretences you knew to be false, thereby committed offence of personation contrary to Section 484 of the Criminal Code Law Cap 38, Laws of Oyo State, 2000.”
They all pleaded guilty to the charges when they were read to them.
Consequently, facts of the cases were reviewed by the prosecution counsels as indicting documents and other incriminating materials were tendered as evidence before the courts. Prosecution counsels further prayed to the courts to convict and sentence the defendants accordingly.
Upon the prayers of the prosecution counsel, Justice Babawale convicted and sentenced Sobbur to one year imprisonment without an option of fine. Also, Justice Adetujoye convicted and sentenced Olorunnisola to two months imprisonment; and Jimoh, Quam, Ochola, Adeyinka, Ayomipo, Bugama, Segun and Olaoluwatobi to one month jail term each.
Also, Joshua, Dare, Adegbenro and Abiodun were convicted and sentenced to two weeks imprisonment each without an option of fine while Owolabi, Quadri and Jackson bagged two weeks of community service each.
The courts also ordered that the convicts restitute their various victims, including Owolabi who is to pay the sum of N11, 749, 823.36 as restitution.
Items forfeited by the convicts to the Federal Government of Nigeria included one gold colour Lexus ES 330 with Registration number: FKG 184 HZ, one unregistered silver colour Toyota Corolla 2006 model, one black colour Honda Pilot 2004 model with registration number: LSR 783 HW and Chassis number: 2HKYF18464H598117 and one black Lexus ES 300 2002 model with registration number: APP 27 GT with chassis number: JTHBF30G020048119 among others.
All the convicts bagged their imprisonment when they were arrested by operatives of the Ibadan Zonal command of the EFCC for internet-related activities. They were thereafter charged to court and convicted.
In a related development, the Oyo State Command of the Nigeria Police Force handed over four suspected internet fraudsters to the Ibadan Zonal Command of the EFCC, on Friday.
The suspects are Abiodun Ajayi, Salako Saheed, Qudus Owolabi and Abiodun Ridwan.
They were arrested at the Soka area of Ibadan, Oyo State following actionable intelligence on suspected fraudulent internet-related activities.
Items recovered from them include one unregistered Toyota Camry, one gold colour Toyota Camry with Registration number: APP 192 CB, two laptops and five mobile phones among others.
They would be charged in court as soon as investigations are concluded.
Tyler Fields is your internet guru, delving into the latest trends, developments, and issues shaping the online world. With a focus on internet culture, cybersecurity, and emerging technologies, Tyler keeps readers informed about the dynamic landscape of the internet and its impact on our digital lives.