By Felix Ajide
The Ilorin Zonal Command of the Economic and Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Thursday, secured the conviction of one Arowosegbe Feranmi, who claimed to be a native of Offa in Offa Local Government Area of Kwara State for posing as a citizen of Germany to defraud unsuspecting victims.
Arowosegbe was prosecuted on two counts before Justice Mahmud Abdulgafar of the Kwara State High Court in Ilorin.
The defendant pleaded guilty when the charge was read to him.
One of the charge reads:
‘’That you AROWOSEGBE FERANMI (ALIAS BETTY JOE) sometime in August 2021, in Ilorin, within the jurisdiction of this honourable court, did cheat by personation, when you pretended to be Betty Joe, a white female, resident in United States of American, with Gmail Account email@example.com and induced one Joluko, a German Citizen, to send 370 (Three Hundred Euros) to you Via Gift Card and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 321 to the Penal Code and punishable under Section 324 of the Penal Code.’’
Following his plea, the prosecuting counsel, Rashidat Alao, drew the attention of the court to a plea bargain agreement entered by the defendant with the Commission.
She urged the court to consider the plea of guilt entered by the defendant, his extra-judicial statements and the uncontroverted testimonies of the sole prosecution witness to convict defendant in line with the plea bargain agreements and the provisions of the law.
Justice Abdulgafar in his judgement said that, “the court has found merit in the case brought by the prosecution”.
The judge convicted and sentenced Arowosegbe to six months imprisonment on each of the two counts to run concurrently at Mandala Correctional Centre, which should be suspended.
According to the judge, “the convict is to forfeit the iPhone 11 used to perpetrate the crime and the sum of N300,000 (Three Hundred Thousand Naira), which he benefited from the crime to the Federal Government.