The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has secured the conviction of one Ibrahim Abdullahi who was arraigned on a one count charge bordering on cheating before Justice C.N Oji of the FCT High Court, Apo, Abuja.
Abdullahi started his journey to jail after he was allegedly entrusted with a cheque of N10m (ten million naira) written in the name of one Innocent Ikhile by one Rabiu Hassan.
The accused fraudulently obtained an international passport using the name on the cheque and went ahead to open a bank account with an old generation bank through which he cleared the cheque and subsequently put the money to personal use. The count reads:
“That you, Ibrahim Abdullahi, on or about 14th December, 2011, at Abuja within the jurisdiction of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory did cheat First Bank of Nigeria Plc by personation to wit: pretending to be one Innocent Ikhile, by opening an account with First Bank of Nigeria Plc to fraudulently clear a cheque of N10,000,000 (Ten Million Naira) issued to the said Innocent Ikhile by one Rabiu Hassan and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 321 of the Penal Code, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria (Abuja) 1990 and punishable under Section 322 of the same Act.”
The accused pleaded guilty to the charge.
Counsel to EFCC, Aisha Aminu Ahmed, after stating the facts of the case urged the court to sentence the accused based on his plea.
Responding, the defence counsel, Osagie Ilhiambe prayed the court to tamper justice with mercy considering the fact that, the accused is a family man who is also remorseful and contrite.
“The victim of the crime has pardoned the accused, and he has made amends by way of refund and restitution.
He is a family man who is also remorseful and contrite. I urge your Lordship to tamper justice with mercy”, Ilhiambe pleaded. He further pleaded with the court to explore the option of fine as “incarceration” has the tendency to make the incarcerated hardened.
Justice Oji, after listening to the submissions of both counsel, convicted the accused and sentenced him to 3 months imprisonment without option of fine.
– Xavier Ndanyongmong