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Court jails 27 internet fraudsters in Awka

Enugu Zonal Command of the EFCC on Tuesday, March 5, 2024, secured the conviction and sentencing of 27 internet fraudsters before Justice Nnamdi Dimgba of the Federal High Court sitting in Awka, Anambra State.

The convicts are: Ajaero Chidiebube, Kosisochukwu Wisdom Ugwu, Apeh Samuel, Hyacinth Henry, Ebuka Moses Ugwu, Abugu Emmanuel Ebuka, Ogbu George, Onoja Chekwube, Onu Ogbonna Celestine, Ugwude Innocent Ekene, Solomon Emeka Okechukwu, Kosisochukwu Mamah, Idoko Fidelis Ejiofor, David Ifebuche Moses, Jude Ikechukwu, Kosisochukwu Idoko Martins and Victor Odoh Chinecherem.

Others are; Eze Caleb Somtochukwu, Ekeleme Victor, Osuji Kingsley, Eze Sopuruchukwu Marvin, Osuji Nnaemeka, Ikechi David, Ejiogu Chizoba, Arinze John Ojobo, Eze Daniel Chinecherem and Michael Ojo.

They were jailed after pleading guilty to one-count separate charges bordering on fraudulent impersonation and obtaining by false pretence.

The charge against Okechukwu reads: “That you, Solomon Emeka Okechukwu sometime in 2024, at Enugu, Enugu State within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, fraudulently impersonated Jennifer Alberto from Reading, United Kingdom by means of your Tecno Camon 20 with IMEI number 3551344570732428 via a fake Facebook Social Media Account with the intent to gain advantage for yourself from unsuspecting foreign nationals and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 22 (3) (a) and (b) of the Cybercrime (Prohibition, Prevention, etc) Act 2015 and punishable under Section 22 (4) of the same Act”.

In view of their pleas, prosecution counsel, Michael Ikechukwu Ani reviewed the facts of the cases and prayed the court to convict and sentence them accordingly. However, defence counsels, Okeke Bernard and James Nwatarali prayed for leniency for their clients.

Justice Dimgba thereafter convicted and sentenced them as follows; Marvin was sentenced to one year imprisonment with an option of fine of N120,000,00( One Hundred and Twenty Thousand Naira) and community service, Samuel, Henry, Ugwu, Ebuka, Martins and Chinecherem bagged one year imprisonment each, with an option of fine of N50,000.00( Fifty Thousand Naira) and community service while the rest were handed 1year imprisonment each, with an option of fine of N150,000.00( One Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira) and community service.

Justice Dimgba also ordered that mobile phones recovered from them be forfeited to the Federal Government.

They all bagged their imprisonment when they were arrested for internet-related offences. They were prosecuted and jailed.

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