By Nimot Adetola Sulaimon
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC), Ilorin Zonal office, has secured the convictions of two serial internet fraudsters.
Justice Adenike Akinpelu and Justice Mahmood Abdulgafar of the Kwara State High Court presided the sittings respectively.
One of the convicts, Hammed Tope, 27 was prosecuted on two-count charges of impersonation and obtaining by false pretence before Justice Akinpelu.
While Yusuf Amao, 31 faced four-count charges, bordering on impersonation and obtaining by false pretence before Justice Abdulgafar.
One of the charges against Tope read, “That you, Hammed Tope ( a.k.a Jennifer Tabor and Nancy Williams), sometime in August, 2019, in Ilorin, within the jurisdiction of this honorable court, did cheat by impersonation, when you pretended to be one Sarah Bajkowski, a white female with gmail account: , and fraudulently deceived one Bryan Pyle an American Citizen, to send $500.00 (Five Hundred Dollars) to you through gift card after you made him believe you were a lady in love with him and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 321 of the Penal Code and punishable under Section 324 of the same Penal Code.”
A charge against Amao read, “That you, Yusuf Amoo, sometime in December, 2015, at Ilorin, within the judicial division of the High Court, did cheat by impersonation, while acting as a white male, named John Kohns with Gmail account:mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com and in that guise induced one Fahad Matar with email:firstname.lastname@example.org to send you the sum of $800 (Eight Hundred USD) under the pretence of being an Investigation Officer on Fraud Victim Compensation to enable him access $400,000 and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 324 of the Penal Code.”
Both of them pleaded guilty to all the charges against them.
While Justice Akinpelu gave Tope no custodial sentence, he sentenced him to a fine of N600,000 (Six Hundred Thousand Naira) on count one and N300,000 (Three Hundred Thousand Naira) on count two.
Justice Abdulgafar sentenced Amao to 24 months imprisonment at six months each on the four counts.
Additionally, he is to restitute his victims of the sums they lost to him and forfeit his phones, laptop and other tools, used in the crime to the federal government.