A 24 years old cyber crime suspect who is currently being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Zonal office in Ilorin, before Justice Sikiru Oyinloye of the Kwara State High Court on four counts of internet fraud today informed the court of his decision to enter into a plea bargain negotiation with the prosecution.
The defendant, Babatunde Muhammad Bashir, had on October 8, 2019 pleaded ‘not guilty’ to the four count information brought against him by the EFCC.
Count one of the charge reads, “That you, Babatunde Muhammad Bashir on or about the 20th day of September 2019 in Ilorin, within the jurisdiction of the High Court of Kwara State, with intend to defraud, had in your possession a document containing false pretence, to wit: hangout with +1 6212-913-2052, in which you represented yourself as a Detective and requested one Mr Elian Torres Saucedo to send $500 gift cards, a representation you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 6 and 8 (b) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act 2006 and punishable under Section 1(3) of the same Act”.
When the matter came up for hearing today, October 30, the prosecuting counsel, Christopher Mschelia informed the court that the Commission had received a request for plea bargain from the defendant.
“My Lord, this matter is slated today for commencement of trial but yesterday the 29th of October 2019 I received an application for plea bargain on behalf of the defendant. In the light of the above, we shall be asking for a date to enable us to process the application, ” he said.
The defence counsel, Lanre Badmus confirmed the application.
Justice Oyinloye consequently adjourned the case to November 13, 2019 for parties to report on the plea agreement.