The Lagos State Police Command has arrested a six-man syndicate that specialised in robbing Lagosians of their mobile phones and turning over its SIM cards to hackers who get hold of the account details of its owners and transfer its balances to their accounts.
Parading the group on Tuesday, the Commissioner of Police, Edgal Imohimi, disclosed that the syndicate comprised of three splinter groups visiting choice locations in the state to rob members of the public of their phones.
Imohimi stated that six suspects have been arrested by the Decoy Team of the Rapid Response Squad of the command in relation to the fraud.
He noted that the group handed over the SIMs to another set of people that would through special computer apps get the bank account details of the owners and thereafter get the account balances.
Imohimi added that the balance of the account is now transferred into different accounts sourced by another set of suspects.
According to the Commissioner, Nwanze Ifeanyi (27), Martins Achi (27) and Solomon Dike (31) rob people of their phones and flee the scene on motorcycle.
He stated that Muritala Mohammed (28), popularly known as Swallow, through computer apps retrieve the names, bank details of the original owner of the SIM, including BVN, adding that the recovered details are used to determine the account balance.
“Moneys in the account are transferred into different accounts sourced by the third group involving Shamson Mustapha (25) and Ali Hassan (27),” The added.
Imohimi revealed that the activities of the group were brought to the attention of the Decoy Team of the Rapid Response Squad when they stole the phone of one Yinka at a birthday party in Egbeda area of the state.
He added that he worked on the phone’s SIM card and transferred N1,153,000 from her FCMB account into accounts in FCMB and other banks.
The accounts belonged to Ikechukwu Enyadike in FCMB, Oyinuro Victor and Joseph Blessing Benita.
The owner of the account only got to know of the transactions when she inserted the replaced SIM into a new phone.
He further disclosed that further investigations into the activities of the group revealed that the gang also transferred N120,000 from an account belonging to one Chima Mbakwe of 3, BM Anyawu Close, Iba New Site.
According to Muritala Muhammed, an SS 2 drop out of Ojo High Secondary School, Lagos, he started hacking into bank accounts of people in June 2017.
Muhammed said his first hit was N20,000.
Exhibits recovered from the gang included two laptops and 10 SIM cards among other things.