Akwa Ibom court sends three internet fraudsters to jail

Justice Chigozie Sergius Onah of the Federal High Court sitting in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State has convicted and sentenced three internet fraudsters to different jail terms.

Their offences bordered on criminal impersonation, internet fraud and possession of fraudulent documents.

The convicts: Abraham Itoro Sunday, Ezea Chidera Charles and Udoh Christopher Gabriel, were jailed on February 1, 2024 upon their arraignment by the Uyo Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on one-count separate charge bordering on cybercrimes.

The lone-count charge reads: “That you Abraham Itoro Sunday ‘M’ sometime in 2023 within the jurisdiction of this honourable court did fraudulently impersonate Brian O’ Noel on Facebook with the intent to gain advantage for yourself and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 22 (2)(b)(I) of the Cybercrimes (Prohibition, prevention) Act 2015 and punishable under the same section.”

They pleaded guilty to all the charges when the charge was read to them.

Based on their pleas, prosecution counsels, Enobong Ubokudom and Farida Bukar, prayed the court to convict and sentence them accordingly.

Delivering judgment on Thursday, Justice Onah convicted and sentenced Sunday and Charles to six months imprisonment each with an option of fine of N200,000, while Gabriel bagged five months jail term with an option of a fine of N150,000.

The court also ordered that the three smartphones used by the convicts to perpetrate the crimes be forfeited to the Federal Government of Nigeria.

The convicts started their journey to the correctional centre when they were arrested by operatives of the Uyo Zonal Command of the EFCC on November 22, 2023 at different locations in Afaha Atai, Iko Eket, Akwa Ibom State.   

While Charles fraudulently portrayed himself as “Molina Urovsky” on Facebook, Sunday  portrayed himself as Brian O’niel and Gabriel presented himself as Alexander Douglas on Instagram.

Investigation showed that all the convicts impersonated foreigners by using their identities to defraud their victims. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button