DSS witness narrates how suspect falsified travelling documents


Federal High Court

DSS operatives

Mr Franklin Akinbade, an officer of the Department of State Service (DSS), on Monday told an FCT High Court, Kubwa, how a suspect, Olumide, Akiola, falsified documents which he presented at the American Embassy.

Akinbade, led-in evidence by Mr Oremosele Collins, the prosecuting counsel, told the court that the suspect introduced himself and four others as staff of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC).

According to him, the defendant told him during investigation that sometimes in 2013, one Lawrence and Chidi, now at large, met the defendant to help them secure visa for their clients, which he declined.

”He told me that they came back in 2015 asking to sponsor him (the defendant) to a Global Summit holding in America, which was in line with his profession as a protocol officer, if he would assist his friends too.

“Thereafter, he obtained a letter from the Ministry of External Affairs, introducing himself and four others as officers of NIMC.

”He also told me that Lawrence was the one who `photo-shopped’ his identity card as staff of the commission.

”At the embassy, the officials discovered `hanky panky’ and called the General Manager, Human Resources at NIMC, whose signature was on the ID card to confirm its authenticity.

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” That was how they were caught and the defendant later confessed that he forged the signature.”

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According to Akinbade, some items recovered from the defendant after he was arrested were international passports, invitation letters, identity cards of NIMC and a photocopy of a letter written to the Ministry of External Affairs.

The defendant, a business man, is facing a two-count charge bordering on fraud and forgery.

Mrs S. Abimbola, counsel to the defendant, applied to the court to adjourn the matter on the ground that the defendant was ill and could not continue with the proceedings.

The prosecuting counsel did not object, saying it was pardonable since the adjournment was based on health grounds.

The judge, Justice Bello Kawu, adjourned further hearing in the matter until May 3.

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