The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Friday secured the convictions of nine internet fraudsters and a banker before Justice Emeka Nwite of the Federal High Court sitting in Warri, Delta State.
They were arraigned separately for offences bordering on impersonation, intent to defraud and failure to disclose suspicious transactions.
Those convicted are Onomua Victor, aka John Williamson; Ovie Evans, aka Miller John; Ikpasa Efe (Julius Mark); Abuwa Mavis; Akegor Godbless Omamuyovwi, aka Sherri Hunt; Eyoyibo Joseph, aka Norman Greg; Akpighoro Malvelt, aka Michel Reymond; Anthony Omonomo, aka John; Edofeuwose Maya and Peter Atolo.
The charge against Akegor Godless Omamuyovmi reads: “That you Akegor Godbless Omamuyovwi (Alias Sherri Hunt) Julius Oluwafunmisho Okedele (now at large) Oyi ye Enwefah (now at large) and Eke Jane Frances (now at large) sometime between 2018 and June 2019 in Ughelli, Delta State within the jurisdiction of this honourable court did fraudulently impersonate the identity of one Sherri Hunt and posed as an oil worker in Milan in your yahoo mail account and in that false identity sent love scam mails to Ms. Roberta Daley, a Canada resident . In that process induced her to transfer the sum of $390, 952 to you and you thereby committed an offence contrary to section 22 (2)(b)(ii) of the Cybercrime ( Prohibition Prevention etc) Act 2015 and punishable under Section 22 (2)(b)(IV) of same Act.”
Each of the defendant pleaded guilty to the charge when it was read to him.
In view of their plea, the prosecution counsel, Larry Aso Peters, prayed the court to convict and sentence the defendants as contained in the plea bargain agreement.
The defence counsel, Pascal Ugaome, pleaded with his lordship to temper justice with mercy as the defendants were first time offenders who have become remorseful for their actions and have promised never to return to crime.
Justice Emeka Nwite after listening to both the defence and prosecution counsel, convicted and sentenced the defendants to six months imprisonment commencing from the date of judgment or an option of N200,000 fine.
They are also to forfeit items recovered from them as proceeds of crime to the Federal Government of Nigeria.
However the court sentenced Akegor Godbless Omamuyovwi to six months imprisonment or an option of N2 million fine.
He is also to restitute $390,952 to the victim.