The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Abuja Zonal Command, achieved the conviction of eight internet fraudsters for impersonation before Justices Chinyere Nwecheonu, A.A Akobi, A.I. Kutigi, and V.S Garba of the Federal Capital Territory High Court, Abuja, on Wednesday, May 10, 2023.
Five of the convicted, Emmanuel Ogochukwu, Ugochukwu Mathias and Aderele Adekunle, Abdullahi Adebola Ayinde, and Matthew Ushie Adie, were charged with one count each before Justice Nwecheonwu of the FCT High Court, Kuje.
Ogochukwu, pretending to be Kob Sook Dennis cheated one Yen Tran on Facebook platform. Ugochukwu also pretending to be Arjun Sharma on Instagram cheated unsuspecting females of the sum of $400 (Four Hundred US Dollars).
Aderele, pretending to be one Finalisa, the daughter of one Lee Bruce, a contractor from Hong Kong, obtained the sum of 3000 RMB (Three Thousand Renminbi), while Abdullahi created an Instagram account in the name of an American actor, Tom Cruise and in that assumed character obtained the sum of $80 (Eighty US Dollars) from one Anne Line Bergh alias Sarafina Carly, a Norwegian citizen.
Justice Nwecheonu sentenced all five defendants to one year in prison with options of fine as follows: Emmanuel Ogochukwu and Abdullahi both bagged a fine of N200,000 (Two Hundred Thousand naira) each, while Aderele is to pay N300,000 (Three Hundred Thousand Naira) fine. Ugochukwu and Adie were fined N250,000 (Two Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira only) each.
In addition, all convicts are to forfeit proceeds of crime to the Federal Government.
In a related development, one Raphael Samuel Maduabuchi who was prosecuted before Justice A.A Akobi of the FCT High Court Gwagwalada on a one count charge for cheating by personation when he presented himself as a white woman named ‘plasticjuggernaut787’ from the United States of America to obtain a total sum of $500 (Five Hundred United States Dollars) from Damonnava as transport fare to meet him, was sentenced to community service including cutting the grass within the court premises, after pleading guilty to the charge.
Also, his Samsung Galaxy S9 phone is to be forfeit to the Federal Government.
Also, Justice A.I. Kutigi of the FCT High Court Jabi, Abuja convicted one Prince David on a one count charge of cheating by impersonation when he created a Reddit application with nude female pictures with the name Ladiphilipol and obtained One Hundred and Fifty Dollars ($150) from one Josef, pretending to be in a romantic relationship with him.
He was sentenced to one month in prison with a N50, 000 (Fifty Thousand Naira) option of fine.
In the same vein, one Igbafen Ifijen was convicted by Justice V.S Garba of FCT High Court Kuje for cheating by impersonation when he presented himself as a white man from Germany using a dating site called ‘Lovoo’ and benefitted the sum of EUR3, 145 (Three Thousand One Hundred and Forty Five Euro) only from one Jutta, Audrea and Eike, all German women. The offence is contrary to Section 321 of the Penal Code Act, Laws of the Federation (Abuja) 1990 and punishable under Section 324 of the same Act.
Igbafen, after pleading guilty to the charge was convicted by Justice Garba and sentenced to a one year jail term with an option N75,000 (Seventy Five Thousand Naira) fine.