The Enugu Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has successfully obtained convictions against 16 individuals involved in internet fraud.
The convictions were secured before Justice F.I Riman of the Federal High Court in Akwa, Anambra State, on June 27, 2023. The charges against the defendants revolved around impersonation.
The convicted individuals are Ukwuoma Mmasi Joseph, Godwin John Ifeanyi, Azubuike Chimaobi Kelvin, Chukwuma Peter, Mboji Henry Chima, Ngene Chukwuma Samuel, Michael Ogbodo, Michael Elijah, Okafor Ifeanyi Gabriel, Obiozor Franklin, Agah Chukwuebuka David, and Iloabuchi Damian Okafor. Additionally, Ifeanyi Jeff Ukwuoma, Chukwudalu Marvellous Kalu, Kulugh Mbatierev Simon, and Paschal Ugwuanyi were among those convicted.
One of the defendants, Ukwuoma Mmasi Joseph, was charged with fraudulent impersonation. The charge specified that he impersonated a United States citizen and soldier named Nelson using his Tecno Spark 8 phone and a fake WhatsApp account. The intention was to deceive unsuspecting foreign nationals and fraudulently obtain money. This act violated section 22(3)(a) and (b) of the Cybercrimes (Prohibition, Prevention, etc.) Act, 2015, and is punishable under section 22(4) of the same Act.
All 16 defendants pleaded guilty to their respective charges. Consequently, the prosecuting counsel urged the court to convict and impose appropriate sentences.
The court proceeded to convict and sentence the individuals to one year of imprisonment or a fine of N150,000.00 each. Furthermore, their phones were ordered to be forfeited to the Federal Government of Nigeria.
This conviction sends a strong message against internet fraud and emphasizes the commitment of the EFCC to combat cybercrime in Nigeria. It serves as a warning to others engaged in such activities that they will face legal consequences for their actions.
Source: EFCC Nigeria
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