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Court Convicts Five For Internet-related Fraud in Kaduna

Justice N.U. Sadiq of the Kaduna State High Court sitting in Kaduna has convicted and sentenced five people to various prison terms on charges of internet-related frauds brought against them by the Kaduna Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC. 

The convicts: Jonathan Oluwasegun, Joseph Maurice, Paul Odoh, Gideon Udochukwu, and Alexander Onyema were convicted after pleading guilty to the separate one count charges that bordered on cybercrime and cheating by impersonation.

The charges read: “that you, Jonathan Oluwasegun (aka Keanu Reeves), Male, sometime in May, 2023 in Kaduna, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, committed the offence of cheating by impersonation when you presented yourself to be one Keane Reeves (a Canadian Actor) on Instagram to Eleanor Lakin and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 308 of the Kaduna State Penal Code Law, 2017 and punishable under Section 309 of the same Law.

“That you, Joseph Maurice, (aka Christos Ellis) sometime in March, 2023 at Unguwan Sunday axis of Kaduna, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, falsely presented yourself as one Christos Ellis ( a white man) and in such assumed character cheated one Glory (a Pakistani) the sum of 35, 000 RPK and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 308 of the Kaduna State Penal Code Law, 2017 and punishable under Section 309 of the same Law.

“That you, Paul Odoh (aka Michele Morrone), Male, sometime in July, 2023 in Kaduna, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, falsely presented yourself as one Terrell Allen and in such assumed character, impersonated one Michele Morrone via Google chat (an online social media application) and you thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 142(1) of the Kaduna State Penal Code Law, 2017.

“That you, Gideon Udochukwu (aka David Mark), Male, sometime in July 2023, at Unguwan Sunday, Kaduna, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, fraudulently impersonated one David Mark (a Filipino ) on Instagram, in such assumed character cheated one Ms. Rachel(a Filipino ) the sum of $100USD and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 308 and punishable under Section 309 of the Kaduna State Penal Code Law, 2017.

“That you, Alexander Onyema (aka Anderson Williams David), sometime in July 2023, in Kaduna within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, did commit an offence to wit; cheating by impersonation where you falsely presented yourself as one Anderson Williams David on Facebook and in such assumed character cheated one Lynies Vilamore the total sum of P12,000(Twelve Thousand Philippine Peso) and thereby committed an offence, contrary to Section 308 of the Kaduna State Penal Code Law, 2017 and punishable under Section 309 of the same Law”.

Following their ‘guilty’ plea, the prosecuting counsel, M.U Gadaka  prayed  the court to convict them accordingly. 

Justice Sadiq, thereafter convicted and sentenced all the defendants to two years imprisonment with option of N150, 000 fine each. Each of them was also ordered to forfeit the mobile device used in committing the crime to the Federal Government. While  Oluwasegun, is to pay the sum of N350,000.00 as restitution to the victim.  Maurice and Udochukwu are to forfeit the sum of 35,000 PKR (equivalent to $100 USD) and $60 USD respectively to the Federal Government.

The convicts were arrested in a sting operation at Unguwan Sunday in the Barnawa axis of Kaduna based on intelligence on their alleged internet-related fraud activities.

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