Businessman Jailed For Theft

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An Ikeja High Court on Tuesday sentenced a businessman, Yinka Fagbure, to one year imprisonment for stealing N356,000.

Justice Olutoyin Ipaye sentenced Fagbure, 38, after he pleaded guilty to a three-count charge of fraud, stealing and uttering.

The judge convicted him on each of the charges, but ordered that the sentences should run concurrently beginning from 2 November, 2012 when he was first arraigned.

She said: “I hereby sentence the defendant to one year imprisonment. The period of his custodial remand is to be taken into consideration.’’

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Fagbure had initially at his arraignment pleaded not guilty to the charges and was remanded in prison custody.

However, unable to perfect his bail terms, the convict entered a plea bargain agreement with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

At his re-arraignment on Tuesday,  the EFCC counsel, Mr A.M. Ocholi told the court that Fagbure committed the offences at Ikeja between July 20, 2010 and May 5, 2011.

Ocholi said the convict fraudulently obtained the sum of N356,000 belonging to  Mr Tokunbo Akintelure.

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He said Fagbure forged a Skye Bank personal account opening form to open an account with number 1053558222 in the name of Jide Babalola.

According to him, the convict altered the forged Skye Bank personal account opening form and presented it as genuine.

The prosecuting counsel said the offences committed contravened Sections 390, 467 and 468 of the Criminal Code Laws of Lagos State of Nigeria 2003.

Fagbure, thereafter, pleaded guilty to the charges.

His counsel, Mr Lekan Egberoungbe, pleaded with the court to temper justice with mercy as the convict’s family had suffered as a result of his incarceration.

Egberoungbe said,” My Lord, he is a first time offender and has equally restituted and returned the sum stolen to the complainant.”

He, therefore, pleaded with the court to approve the plea bargain entered by the parties on 26 September.