Three suspected land speculators, Taiwo Moses, Stella Ogbonna and Victor Bassey, allegedÂ to have conspired with others at large to obtain money under false pretences, wereÂ recently arraigned before a Federal High Court in Lagos.
In a criminal charge number FHC/L/321C/10 filed before the court by the policeÂ prosecuting officer from Special Fraud Unit, Mr. Chris Owai, the three accused persons,Â sometimes in June this year, were alleged to have conspired with Barrister Raymond EtukÂ Kingsley, Patricia Ogbu, Salami Idowu, Chief Femi Kosoko and others at large, to obtainÂ money under false pretences and stealing and thereby committed an offence contrary toÂ Section 8(a), punishable under Section 3 of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other RelatedÂ Offences Act Cap A6 Volume I Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2008.
When the charge was mentioned for the arraignment of the accused persons, eight of them,Â Rotimi Abe, Barrister Sunny Akele, Ayodele Oluremi, Muyiwa Adeleke, Bamgbade Lukman,Â Johnson Uwem, Kingsley Ibori and Dare Mcaubrey, were not present in court. Consequently,Â their arraignments were differed till a later date.
However, for the other three accused persons, Taiwo Moses, Stella Ogbonna and VictorÂ Bassey, the prosecutor in the criminal charge filed against them, read that with theÂ intention to defraud, obtained N25 million from one Ishola Wale Afolabi with the pretextÂ that they were going to sell a plot of land situated at Lekki Estate, Lagos, to him butÂ this turned out to be false.
The three accused were also alleged to have knowingly and fraudulently forged aÂ Certificate of Occupancy dated 24 December, 1991, purported to have been issued by theÂ Lagos State Ministry of Lands and Survey.
One of the accused persons, Stella Ogbonna, was specifically accused of falselyÂ presenting herself to be one Stella Osharere Gbinige, a representation she knew to beÂ false, while Taiwo Moses was alleged to have conspired with some people at largeÂ sometimes in January 2009, specially with Otunba Idowu Raymond, Dipo Ajayi and Chief FemiÂ Kosoko and others at large, to obtain money under false pretences.
Mr. Owai further alleged that Taiwo Moses and others, Rotimi Abe, Barrister Sunny AkeleÂ and Ayodele Olarerin, sometimes in January 2009, with intent to defraud, obtained N20Â million from one Adaju Segun, with the pretence that they were going to sell a plot ofÂ land situated at Magodo Estate Phase I, Lagos, to him and which turned out to be false.
All the accused pleaded not guilty and the presiding judge, Justice Okon Abang, adjournedÂ till 4 October to rule on their bail application.