Socialite Faces Criminal Charges 0

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The trial of a Lagos socialite, Mr. Olu Obafemi, alleged to have cloned a Skye Bank’s cheque number 10000738 to defraud the Lagos State Ministry of Establishments and Training, Alausa, Ikeja, for the sum of N26,750,000 has been adjourned till 6 July, 2011.

Olu Obafemi was arraigned before a Federal High Court in Lagos sometimes last year on a three-count criminal charge of forgery and stealing.

The arrest and subsequent arraignment of the accused was sequel to a complaint by the Lagos State Ministry of Establishments and Training to Skye Bank that its account has been wrongly debited to the tune of N26,750,000 through a forged cheque and demanded for a refund.

The bank then conducted a search on the transaction officer who confirmed paying the forged check claimed to have acted on a letter of confirmation which could not be traced within the bank.

Consequently, in a letter dated 30 July, 2010 titled Re: A Case Of Cloned Cheque At Skye Bank, Alausa, Secretariat Branch, Lagos State, Involving Lagos State Ministry Of Establishments and Training, made a formal complaint to the Commissioner of Police, Special Fraud Unit “D” Department, Force Criminal Investigation Department, Milverton Road, Ikoyi, Lagos.

The bank attached to the letter, a certified copy of the cloned cheque number 1000738 for the sum of N26,750,400 in favour of Olu Obafemi Ventures, which was presented through Lagos clearing centre on 7 October, 2009 by Olu Obafemi Ventures via the company’s account with Intercontinental Bank.

In the course of investigation, policemen from Special Fraud Unit arrested Olu Obafemi and subsequently arraigned him in court.

In a four-count criminal charge number FHC/L/189C/10 filed before a Federal High Court in Lagos by police prosecuting counsel, Mohammed Amabua, from Special Fraud Unit, Ikoyi, Olu Obafemi was alleged to have fraudulently forged Skye Bank Plc cheque to the tune of N26,750,000 purported to have been issued to him by the Lagos State Ministry of Establishments and Training and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 463 and punishable under Section 467 of the Criminal Code Cap C 38 Volume 4 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2008.

The police prosecutor had lined up nine witnesses in prosecuting the accused. They comprised three officials of Lagos State Ministry of Establishments and Training, Alausa Secretariat, Ikeja, five officials of Skye bank Plc and the police officer who investigated the case. The accused is currently on bail.