The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in Lagos state has secured the conviction and sentencing of one Adebowale Taiwo Abiola, an undergraduate arrested for internet fraud.

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Abiola, who is a 500-level student of Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH) in Oyo, was sentenced to one-year imprisonment before O.A. Taiwo, a presiding judge of the special offences court sitting in Ikeja, Lagos.

Wilson Uwujaren, the spokesperson of the EFCC, said that the convict was arrested following intelligence reports about the criminal activities of a syndicate of internet fraudsters in Lekki.

He said an investigation revealed that Abiola, who resides at Brownstone Estate, Ikate, Elegushi, Lagos, had presented himself as Burton J. Smith, an American citizen, to defraud his unsuspecting victims.

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It was revealed that the defendant used the identity of Smith, who is also an ex-military officer, to defraud one Courtney Selina Kaye, a woman who had sent him money in Bitcoin valued at $104,500 back in 2019.

Abiola was arraigned on a one-count amended charge of possessing fraudulent files containing false pretence.

After he pleaded guilty to the charge brought against him, I. A. Mohammed, the prosecution counsel, reviewed the facts of the case and also told the court about the plea bargain entered into by the defendant with the prosecution.

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The prosecution counsel, thereafter, urged the judge to sentence the defendant accordingly. In the verdict, the judge convicted and sentenced the defendant to one-year imprisonment, with an option of a fine of N300,000.

The judge also held that the sum of N5,000,000 recovered from the defendant be forfeited to the victim through the federal government alongside a black Mercedes Benz GLK with registration number AKD 573 GK.

The judge finally ordered that N26,620,000, being the remaining part of $104,500 fraudulently obtained by the convict from Kaye, be restituted from the assets and property of the convict until the sum is fully recovered.

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