Four men were yesterday re -arraigned before a Federal High Court, in Lagos, by the Special Fraud Unit (SFU), of the Nigerian Police Force for allegedly obtaining the sum of $1.362 million and N46. 533 million under false pretence from a former House of Representative member, Honourable Eseme Eyiboh.
The four accused are: Izekor Osatohanmwen Ogiemonyi, alias, Prince Joshua Akenzua, Stephen Victor, alias James Ajayi, Bolade Babatunde, alias Honourable Lawal Adewunmi, and Alhaji Jimoh Saka, alias Tola Ajayi.
In a criminal charge number FHC/L/435c/2017, filed before the court by Police Prosecuting counsel, a Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP), E. A.Jackson alleged that the accused persons and others now at large, between June 2016 and August 2017, at Jatoz Royal Hotel, Osolo Way, Ajao Estate, Lagos, conspired among themselves, and presented themselves to Honourable Eseme Sunday Eyiboh, a former House of Representative member from Eket Federal Constituency, Akwa Ibom State, as accredited representatives of International Foreign Exchange Monitoring Agency/Bureau, in Nigeria.
Thereafter, they fraudulently collected the sum of $1.362 million in three tranches of $1.230 million, $20, 000, and $112, 000, and the sum of N46, 533 million, from their victim, Honourable Eyiboh, under the pretence that they can use their position to deliver vehicles and industrial machines at affordable and official exchange rates.
It was also alleged that the fourth accused persons, Alhaji Jimoh Saka, alias, Peter Ajayi, supplied others accused with the bank accounts domiciled in First Bank, Diamond Bank, and First City Monument Bank (FCMB) into which the sum of N46. 533 million was paid in by Honourable Eyiboh, and later handed over the money to other accused persons.
The offences alleged to have been committed by the accused persons are contrary to Sections 8(a), 1(1)(a) and 8(9), and punishable under Sections 1(3) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, No.14 of 2006.
All the accused persons pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Following their plea of not guilty, their lawyers pleaded with the court to admit their clients to bail in the most liberal terms.
In response to their bail applications, the prosecutor, CSP Jackson, urged the court not to grant the bail application.
CSP Jackson particularly objected to the third accused person, Bolade Babatunde, alias, Honourable Lawal Adewunmi, bail, saying that he has no means of livelihood, and that granting his bail application will be dangerous to the society.
After listening to the submissions of both parties, the Presiding Judge, Justice Muslim Hassan, adjourned the matter till January 19, for ruling on the bail application, while fixing February 19, 2017 for the commencement of trial.
The judge however, ordered that the four accused persons be remanded in prisons custody, pending the determination of their bail application