Non-Declaration of $375,000, Businessman Bags Two Years in Jail
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC Kaduna Zonal Office has secured the conviction of one Rabiu Mohammed Ahmad before Justice Z.B. Abubakar of the Federal High Court sitting in Kaduna on a one-count charge bordering on non-declaration of currency $375,000 (Three Hundred and Seventy Five Thousand Dollars).
Trouble began for Ahmad when he was arrested by officers of the Intelligence Unit of the Nigeria Customs Service at the Kaduna International Airport on March 3, 2018.
The officers while on duty intercepted a bag, which when checked was found containing $375,000 belonging to a passenger in the name of Rabiu Mohammed at the departure hall of the Kaduna International Airport.
After preliminary investigation, the case was transferred to the EFCC, Kaduna Zonal Office for further investigation.
He was first arraigned on March 20, 2018 for non-declaration of the said $375,000.
The count reads: “That you, Rabiu Mohammed Ahmad, with International Passport number A50280997 on or about the 3rd day of March, 2018 at the Kaduna International Airport, Kaduna State within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, while transporting in cash the sum of $ 375,000 (Three Hundred and Seventy Five Thousand Dollars) from Nigeria to United Arab Emirate (UAE) onboard Ethiopian Airlines Flight Number ETO 941, did conceal the money in bag, which you did not declare to the Nigerian Customs Service as required under Section 12 of the Foreign Exchange (Monitoring and Miscellaneous Provision) Act CAP F34 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 and section 2(3) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended) in 2012 and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 2(5) of the same Act.”
He pleaded “not guilty” to the charge.
The EFCC presented three witnesses to testify before the Court. However, before their testimony could be heard, the defence filed an application for a plea bargain.
At the resume hearing today March 14, 2019 the defence counsel, Husseini Abdu, informed the court that the defendant had changed his plea “guilty”. An application for a plea bargain was also brought before the court, which was granted by the trial judge.
Prosecuting Counsel, S.H. Sa’ad, thereafter, reviewed the facts as contained in the charge and tendered seven exhibits and urged the court to convict him based on the exhibits tendered and his guilty plea.
In his ruling, Justice Abubakar convicted him and sentenced him to two years in prison with an option of N200,000. In line with the relevant laws, he was also ordered to forfeit 15 per cent of the undeclared funds to the Federal Government of Nigeria.
Ag. Head, Media & Publicity
Two Jailed for Cyber Fraud
Hon. Justice Mohammed Abubakar of the Federal High Court 1, Abeokuta, Ogun State, on Thursday, March 14, 2019 convicted and sentenced Damilare Adelaja and Banjo Femi (a.k.a Katherine Bishop, Lonely Diva) to four months imprisonment each after they opted for a plea bargain and pleaded guilty on one-court charge bordering on impersonation.
The convicts were re-arraigned separately by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Ibadan zonal office.
The charge preferred against Banjo reads: “That you Banjo Femi (a.k.a Katherine Bishop, a.k.a Lonely Diva) sometimes in November, 2018, at Awa-Ijebu within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court Fraudulent Impersonated by representing yourself to be Katherine Bishop, a white female Via your mail sent to one Charlse Hyatt a United States of American Citizen through your email address: [email protected] in order to facilitate your obtaining gift cards worth the sum of $350 (Three Hundred and Fifty United States of America Dollars) and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 22 (3) (b) and punishable under Section 22 (4) of the Cyber Crimes (Prohibition, Prevention Etc) Act, 2015”.
For Adelaja, the one-count reads: “That you Damilare Adelaja sometimes in 2018, at Awa-Ijebu within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court falsely represented yourself as Victoria Jane and sent female pictures through an e-mail [email protected], as that of the said Victoria Jane to one Jason who resides in the United States of America in order to obtain the sum of $30 (Thirty United States of America Dollars) from him, through itune cards and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 22 (3) (b) and punishable under Section 22 (4) of the Cyber Crimes (Prohibition, Prevention Etc) Act, 2015”.
Before agreeing to the amended charges, the convict had pleaded not guilty when they were originally arraigned.
Banjo was initially arraigned with a two-count charge, while Adelaja’s one-count charge bordered on obtaining by false pretence.
Having agreed with the anti-graft agency on the terms of the bargain, the EFCC counsel prayed the court to accordingly convict the defendants.
Adeola Elumaro and Mabas Mabur were the prosecution counsel in the cases against Adelaja and Banjo respectively.
In his judgement, Justice Abubakar convicted and sentenced them to four months imprisonment each. The jail terms will take effect from November 15, 2018, their day of arrest.
The court also ruled that the items recovered from the convicts be forfeited to their victims, including the cash being extorted.
Banjo will lose his Laptop, Phone and $350 (Three Hundred and Fifty United States of America Dollars), while Adelaja is to surrender his Phone and $30 (Thirty United States of America Dollars) to their victims through the Federal Government of Nigeria, being part of the benefits they derived from their fraudulent acts.
Ag. Head, Media & Publicity