The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has arraigned a computer science student of the University of Calabar, Obasi Ugochukwu, before a Federal High Court sitting in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, for alleged internet fraud.
Ugochukwu was arraigned before Justice T. B. Adegoke on a two count charge of criminal diversion and impersonation
He pleaded ‘not guilty’ to the charges
In view of his plea, the prosecuting counsel, Mr. J. O. Abolarin prayed the court to remand the defendant and fix a date for trial to enable the prosecution prove its case.
Meanwhile, the defence counsel, Mr. I. J. Bassey moved the motion for bail application urging court to grant him bail in liberal terms.
In a short ruling, Justice Adegoke granted the defendant bail in the sum of five million naira and two sureties in like sum.
The sureties according to court must present three years tax clearance certificate, and must reside within the jurisdiction of the court.
The sureties who must be Grade Level 14 officer and above from the Ministry of Finance of the Akwa Ibom State civil service, shall attend the trial of the defendant at each adjourned date and shall give undertaking to that effect.
The court also ordered the registrar of the court to verify the residence of the sureties, and have the Permanent Secretary confirm in writing that the sureties are his employees, and the sureties shall give an undertaking in writing that they will pay the bail bond to the registrar of the court who shall verify the bail condition.
One of the counts reads, “That you Obasi Ugochuwku (a.k.a Mandy Eggwhite, and Alice) sometime in October, 2020 in Nigeria within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court with intent to obtain property and gain advantage for yourself, fraudulently presented yourself as Mandy Eggwhite and defrauded one Donald Schmitz in the sum of One Thousand, Fifty US Dollars ($1,050) and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 22 (2)(b)(i) of the Cybercrime (Prohibition, Prevention Etc) Act, 2015 and punishable under Section (22)(2)(b)(iv) of the same Act.
“and you possess documents containing false pretence to wit; chat messages printed from your iPhone 11 Pro mobile phone which documents you knew contains false pretence and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 6 of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related offences Act 2006 and punishable under Section 9(1)&(2) of the same Act”.
The matter was adjourned till September 21, 2021 for commencement of trial, while the defendant was ordered to be remanded at the Correctional Centre, pending the fulfilment of his bail conditions.