Three men, who allegedly hacked the Facebook account of Lagos State House of Assembly Speaker, Mudashiru Obasa and defrauded him of N9, 188, 100 million, were today, re-arraigned before a Federal High Court, Lagos.
The three suspects, Frank Nwokobia, 27, Ezeoke Kanayochukwu, 25 and Godwin Essien, 28, were re-arraigned before Justice Oluremi Oguntoyinbo of the Federal High Court, Lagos on a five counts charge bordering on conspiracy, fraud, impersonation and identity theft, by men of the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department, (SCIID), Panti-Yaba, Lagos.
The three defendants were formally arraigned during the Court’s long vacation on the same counts, before Justice Chuka Obiozor.
Upon resumption from vacation, the defendants’ case file was reassigned to Justice Oguntoyinbo, for rearrangement and for their plea to be taken.
At the resumed hearing of the matter today, the prosecutor, Mr. William Olu-Ologun, informed the court of the charge against the defendants and pleaded with the court for the charge to be re-read to the defendants, so that their pleas could be taken.
The three defendants pleaded not guilty to the charges, after it was read to them.
Consequently, their lawyers urged the court to admit the accused persons to bail in the most liberal terms.
However, the bail applications were not opposed by the police.
Following the applications of counsel to the accuses, Justice Oguntoyinbo, admitted them to bail in the sum of N5 million, with one each surety each.
The sureties according to the judge, should be landed property owners within the jurisdiction of the court and should deposit the title documents and the Certificate of Occupancy (C-of-O) of their landed property to the court’s Deputy Chief Registrar (DCR).
The judge also ordered that the surety’s official and residential addresses, as well as their phone numbers must be verified by the prosecutor.
The court further directed that the sureties must tendered before the court evidence of three years tax payment.
Meanwhile, trial of the defendants have been adjourned till November 28, 2017.
According to prosecuting counsel, William Olu Ologun, the trio, sometime in May, hacked Obasa’s Facebook account and retrieved information with which they withdrew N9.1million from his Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB) Plc account.
Ologun added that following Obasa’s complaint, the defendants were arrested by the police at different locations in Delta State.
According to him, the accused persons have confessed to the crime.
The offences, he added, were contrary to Sections 27(1)(b) and 22(2)(b)(ii) of the Cybercrimes Prohibition and Prevention Act, 2015 and punishable under same.