The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Wednesday, February 3, 2015, arraigned the trio of Solomon Uchendu, Ndubisi Agu and Uchendo Chikwadu before Justice D. V.Agishir of the Federal High Court sitting in Enugu, Enugu State for offences bordering on obtaining by false pretence and Advanced Fee Fraud.
The suspects, who were living at 4, Coal City University Close, Independence Layout, Enugu, were arrested by operatives of the EFCC following intelligence report over their alleged involvement in Internet crime.
One of the suspects, Solomon, who is currently undergoing the mandatory National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, in Akoko, Ondo State, confessed that he had about seven different email accounts registered with different names.
Solomon, who is facing a seven-count charge, further disclosed that most of his victims were from the U.S., Canada and Germany.
According to him, “One Patricia from Canada gave me $1200USD; Larisa from Germany gave him $300USD; Ethel from the U.S. also gave me $300USD. All of them know me as Lincoln, but they don’t know that I live in Nigeria.”
One of the charges read: “That you Solomon Uchendu on or about 3rdday of May 2014 in Enugu, Enugu State within the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court of Nigeria was found in possession of a document containing a false pretence titled “Hello. I am Mark; sorry for stumbling into your profile” and thereby committed an offence, contrary to section 6 and section 8 sub-section( b ) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offence Act 2006 and punishable under section 1 (3) of the same Act.”
The second suspect, Agu, who hails from Umuelem in Ihitte Uboma LGA of Imo State, also told the court that he had numerous email accounts.
Agu, a final year student of the Enugu State University of Science and Technology, Enugu further told the court that he realized $13000USD between 2013 and February, 2014 from some of his victims across the world.
The third suspect, 22-year-old Chikwadu, a native of Imezi LGA Enugu State, confessed that he had three fake drivers’ licences, which were procured in the names of John Omoaroijake, Gary Harry and Chikwadu Uchendu at a cyber cafe on Airport Road and at the licensing office at Jakpa Road in Warri, Delta State.
Chikwadu, who is currently seeking admission into the Delta State University, said he met one 32 year-old nurse, Grace Talves of Blackpool, United Kingdom on a dating site named “Tagged”.
The suspect, who claimed to be Harry Phillp, 42, thereafter, began to send love scam mails and pictures to Talves, a British divorcee and mother of one, who is currently in Nigeria for an engineering job.
He stated that he duped her £500, an Ipad and a Mac Air laptop.
One of the charges read: “That you Uchendu Chinonso on or about 3rdday of May 2014 in Enugu, Enugu State within the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court of Nigeria was found in possession of a document containing a picture in which you presented yourself as a white man by name Gary Harry Philip a pretence you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 6 and section 8 (b) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act 2006 and punishable under section 1 (3) of the same Act.”
The prosecuting counsel, Barrister Innocent, applied orally for a trial date and pleaded that the suspects be remanded in prison custody.
But the defence counsel, Barrister Aneke, prayed the court to grant the suspects bail, which the prosecuting counsel kicked against.
Justice Agishir adjourned the case to February 10, 2015, while ordering that the suspects be remanded in prison custody.
Head, Media & Publicity
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