Cybercrime: Benue Court remands three suspected fraudsters in Makurdi


The suspects

Cybercrime: Benue Court remands three suspected fraudsters in Makurdi
The suspects

Justice Abdu Dogo of the Federal High Court sitting in Makurdi, Benue State, has ordered the remand of three suspected fraudsters in Nigerian Correctional Facility, Makurdi, for offences bordering on conspiracy and obtaining by false pretence.

The defendants: Chukwuemeka Clement, Gabriel Agbonika and Valentine Agbaka Oryiman, were arraigned on separate charges on Tuesday, June 29, 2021 by the Makurdi Zonal Office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.

They pleaded ‘not guilty’ to the charges against them.

While Chukwuemeka is being prosecuted on four counts, Agbonika and Oryiman are facing trial on two and five counts, respectively.

Count four of the charge against Chukwuemeka reads: “That you, Chukwuemeka Clement, Nigeria, Male, adult on or about the 12th day of May, 2020, in Makurdi, Benue State within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, fraudulently redirected the sum of N480,000.00 transfer instructions during transmission over an authorised communication card device and re-directed the said sum of money transferred electronically with UBA account number 2026740913 belonging to one Mr. David Hangeior Ortese and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 36(2) of the Cybercrime (Prohibition, Prevention, etc) Act, 2015″.

Upon his plea, counsel to the EFCC, Ramiah Ikhanaede, asked for trial date and urged the court to remand the defendant in Correctional Facility.

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Justice Dogo admitted the defendant to bail in the sum of N2million with one surety in like sum. The surety must be a civil servant on Grade Level 12, working with Benue State and must show valid identification, submits the original letter of first appointment and last letter of promotion to the court.

The judge, thereafter, adjourned until September 29, 2021 for trial while ordering his remand in the Correctional Centre, Makurdi pending the perfection of his bail conditions.

Same bail conditions and trial date were also granted and adopted for Agbonika and Valentine following the plea by the prosecuting counsel, George Chia-Yakua.

Count One of the charge against Agbonika reads: “That you, Gabriel Agbonika sometime in January, 2020 in Makurdi within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court being a civil servant with the Federal Ministry of Environment, Abuja, with intent to defraud obtained the sum of N6,500,000 (Six Million and Five Hundred Thousand Naira Only) from one Akpa Emmanuel under false pretence that you will secure job vacancies in some Federal Government Establishments for his loved ones, which pretence you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence, contrary to Section 1(2) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1(3) of the same Act”.

For Oryiman, particulars of count one of the charge against him read: “That you, Valentine Agbaka Oryiman, sometime between the 25th and 27th April, 2021 in Makurdi within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, conspired with one Kelvin Tsokar Terhile (a.k.a. Old Man Center) now at large, and defrauded Cosmic Intelligence Lab of the sum of N1,350,000 (One Million, Three Hundred and Fifty Naira) and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 27(1)(b) of the Cybercrime (Prohibition, Prevention etc) Act, 2015 and punishable under Section 28(2) of the same Act”.

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