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N700m Fraud: ‘We Did Not Charge Anenih Alongside Ize-Iyamu, Others’ – EFCC

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has said that Chief Tony Anenih was not charged along side Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu and four others for alleged laundering of N700m

The commission said it only charged five persons and that the name of Chief Anenih only appeared to enable it present the facts the way it is.

Counsel to the EFCC, Aso Larry, said this why adopting his written address on motion filed by the defendants that the charges against them were no longer competent since Chief Anenih is dead.

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READ ALSO: Involve Women In Governance, NILOWV Charges Bauchi PDP

Pastor Ize-Iyamu,  Mr. Lucky Imasuen, Tony Azigbemi, Efe Erimuoghae Anthony and Chief Dan Orbih were arraigned on an eight-count charge of conspiracy to commit money laundering to the tune of N700 million.

The Commission said the offence contravened section 18(a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act 2011 as amended which is punishable under section 15(3) of the same Act.

The EFCC alleged that the defendants were arraigned for receiving N700 Million prior to the 2015 general elections, from former Minister of Petroleum, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke.

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Ize-Iyamu and four others are, however, challenging the competence of the charges preferred against them by the EFCC.

At the resumed hearing, Larry said the defendants were alive to face trial, noting that the argument was a ploy to delay taking of plea by the defendants.

According to him, it was not the defendants that should state the way and manner they should be charged, noting that it was not possible to amend the charges because Chief Anenih is no more.

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“We have a right to fair hearing. The proof of evidence is before your Lordship. Chief Anenih is not charged. His name appearing does not affect them taking plea. Our duty is to present the fact the way it is”.

Earlier, Counsel to the defendants while adopting  written addresses urged the court to dismiss the EFCC’s reply based on incompetence.

READ ALSO: Naira Marley Tackles EFCC Over Phone Content

Kingsley Obamogie, Counsel to the first defendant, urged the court to strike out the charge because the EFCC filed its reply out of time and that there was no reply from the EFCC as it was not signed.

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He said it was the height of incongruity for a Counsel to affix his stamp and another Counsel will sign it.

On his part, Counsel to the 4th defendant, Ferdinand Orbih, urged the court to strike out the charge for gross incompetence.

He said the prosecution ought to have amended the charge to remove all irrelevant content as the court was not set up to deal with frivolities.

According to him, there was no dispute to the fact that Chief Anenih was dead.

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READ ALSO: Breaking: Veteran Yorubas Actor Is Dead

The Presiding Judge, Justice  Mohammed Umar, however, adjourned to March 26,  for ruling on whether the trial will continue.

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Crime

JUST IN: Police Arrest 21-year-old Suspect Over Threat To Kidnap Alhaji In Edo

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The suspect, Yakubu Idris

 

JUST IN: Police Arrest 21-year-old Suspect Over Threat To Kidnap Allhaji In Edo

The Edo State Police Command says it has arrested a 21-year-old suspect, Yakubu Idris, for allegedly threatening to kidnap one Alhaji Badamasi Saleh, Chairman, Hausa Community in Benin City, Edo State.

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A statement by the Command’s Public Relations Officer, SP Kontongs Bello, said Idris, from Kano, was issuing kidnap threat to his victim right from Kano if he fails to pay a particular amount to a designated bank account.

He added that, after much negotiation, the the Alhaji went to pay to the designated bank account and after that petitioned the police which led to Idris’ arrest in his hideout in Kano, Kano State.

The statement reads in part, “The Command on 16/09/2021 received a petition from Alhaji Badamasi Saleh on threat to kidnap him by an unknown person who claimed he is a member of a kidnapping gang living in Birnin-Gwari bush, Kaduna State with his gang members, that he was paid one million naira by someone close to the complainant to kidnap him but that he decided to reveal it to him because he is a good person, but the suspect insisted that he must pay 1 million naira into a designated GT Bank to pacify his gang members not to execute the planned kidnap.

“The complainant at this point kept pleading and negotiating with the suspects who eventually accepted payment of one hundred thousand naira which was paid into the GT Bank account, hence the petition.

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“On receipt of the information, the operatives of the Command immediately swung into action and arrested the suspect in his hideout in Kano State.

READ ALSO: Edo Police Command Rescues Two Abducted Children, Arrests Suspects

“During the cause of the investigation, it was revealed that the suspect was someone the complainant had assisted in the past while he was in Benin.’?”

Bello, while stating the Command’s Commissioner of Police, Philip Ogbadu, position in security, revealed that the suspects had confessed to the crime.

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He has confessed to the crime and investigation is ongoing to unravel other gang members if any.

“The Commissioner Of Police, CP Philip Ogbadu enjoins the general public not to relent in providing useful and timely information to the police that could lead to the arrest of criminal elements and their cohorts, he further warns criminals to desist from their acts or relocate to other places or else, they will be caught and made to face the full wrath of the law.”

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EFCC Arraigns PHCN Ex-MD For N6bn Insurance Benefit Fraud

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Photo Credit: Daily Post

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arraigned the Managing Director of PJO Ventures Limited, Cecilia Osipitan.

She is being tried along with PJO and Insurance Resourcery and Consultancy Services Limited before Justice U. P. Kekemeke of the Federal Capital Territory High Court in Maitama, Abuja.

Osipitan faces a nine-count charge bordering criminal breach of trust, conspiracy and conversion of public funds to the tune of N6billion.

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EFCC said the money was meant for the payment of outstanding insurance premiums and claims of deceased and incapacitated staff of the defunct Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN).

Osipitan’s offence contravened Section 311 of the Panel Code Act Cap 532 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, (Abuja) 2004 and punishable under Section 312 of the same Act.

The defendant pleaded not guilty when the charges were read.

READ ALSO: JUST IN: Court Bars Orbih, Ogbeide-Ihama, Otsu, Others From Participating In PDP Convention

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Justice Kekemeke granted her bail in the sum of N500million with two sureties in like sum.

The sureties must be federal civil servant, a religious leader or a member of the National Assembly residing and own landed properties in Abuja.

Kekemeke adjourned until January 20, 2022 for commencement of trial.

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Edo: British Actor’s Impostor Jailed, Others Risk Same Fate

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Justice S. M. Shuaibu of the Federal High Court sitting in Benin City, Edo State on Thursday sentenced one Irabor Osarumwense (aka 007 Daniel Craig James Bond) to two years imprisonment for fraud.

Osarumwense was arraigned by the Benin Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on one count charge bordering on impersonation and obtaining by false pretence.

He fraudulently impersonated the identity of Daniel Craig, British actor, to defraud unsuspecting victims.

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The charge reads: “That you Irabor Osarumwense (aka 007 Daniel Craig James Bond) sometimes in 2021 in Benin City, Edo State within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did fraudulently impersonate the identity of Daniel Craig, an American actor by fraudulently sending documents to one Nansiri through the internet which document you claim emanated from the said Daniel Craig with the intent to gain advantage for yourself and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 22 (2)(b)(ii) of the Cybercrime (Prohibition, Prevention, Etc) Act 2015 and punishable under section 22(2)(b)(iv) of the same Act.”

Upon arraignment, the defendant pleaded guilty to the charge.

In view of his plea, the prosecution counsel, Immaculate Elodi, prayed the court to convict and sentence him in accordance with the plea bargain agreement between the parties.

Justice Shuaibu thereafter convicted and sentenced the defendant to two years imprisonment or a fine of N200, 000.

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The defendant is also to forfeit the phone used in perpetuating the crime to the Federal Government of Nigeria.

He is also to undertake in writing to be of good behaviour afterwards.

In a related development, Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court sitting in Warri, Delta State has fixed December 7 and 13, 2021 for the sentencing of two internet fraudsters Marvis Bello and Lucky Uhuamare.

The duo were arraigned on Thursday October 21, 2021 on one count charge each bordering on impersonation and obtaining by false pretence.

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The charge against Bello reads: “That you Marvis Bello (Alex Wrang and Pinky Jenny) on or about the 9th of March 2021 at S&T Barracks, Benin City within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, fraudulently impersonated one Valeries Hollywood, a white man by using Gmailkingsmavis@gmail.com to obtain money from one Rebecca Brown and sending fictitious documents to your advantage, the pretence you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 22 (2)(b)(ii) of the Cybercrime (Prohibition, Prevention, Etc) Act 2015 and punishable under section 22(2)(b)(iv) of the same Act”.

The duo pleaded guilty to the charge when it was read to them.

In view of their plea, the prosecution counsel, Ibrahim Mohammed prayed the court to convict and sentence the defendants in accordance with the plea bargain agreement between the parties.

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However, Justice Abang adjourned to December 7 and 13 for the review of facts of the case and sentencing.

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