The Benin Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Monday, October 18, 2021 secured the conviction of five fraudsters before Justice S. M. Shuaibu of the Federal High Court sitting in Benin City, Edo State.
They are Shuaibu Macclinton, Olasunmoye Teniola, Eze Stephen, Oshodi Nelson Ufo and Ayobamidele Temitope Oguntimehin. The quintet was arraigned on one court charge each for offences bordering on impersonation and obtaining by false pretence.
The charge against Macclinton reads: “That you Shuaibu Macclinton (a.k.a) Larry Benson, Davidd Robert, Scott Benson, Kelly Nice , Patrick Donald and Kristen Robinson) on or about May 9, 2021 within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did fraudulently impersonate the identity of Larry Benson by sending a picture of Christiana Fernandez, a lady in the United States of America through the internet which picture and identity you claimed to be your own with intent to obtain money from her and you thereby committed an offence contrary to section 22 (2)(b)(ii) of the Cybercrime (Prohibition, Prevention, Etc) Act 2015 and punishable under section 22(2)(b)(in) of the same Act.”
The charge against Oshodi Ufo reads: “That you Oshodi Nelson Ufo (aka William Brad Pitt) sometimes in 2021 in Benin City, Edo State within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did impersonate the identity of William Brad Pitt, an American actor by fraudulently sending documents to one Thiammy Dolan through the internet which document you claimed emanated from the said William Brad Pitt with intent to gain advantage for yourself and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 22 (2)(b)(ii) of the Cybercrime (Prohibition, Prevention, Etc) Act 2015 and punishable under section 22(2)(b)(in) of the same Act.”
Head, Media and Publicity, Wilson Uwujaren, said on Sunday that they all pleaded guilty to the charge preferred against them by the EFCC.
In view of their plea, prosecution counsel, I.M Elody prayed the court to convict and sentence the defendants in accordance with the plea bargain agreement between the parties
Justice Shuaibu convicted and sentenced Shuaibu Macclinton to three years imprisonment with an option of N300,000 fine while Ayobamidele Oguntimehin bagged two years imprisonment with an option of N300,000 fine.
The trio of Oshodi Nelson Ufo, Olasunmoye Teniola , Eze Stephen bagged two years imprisonment with an option of N200 ,000 fine each.
Justice Shuaibu also ordered those phones recovered from them during investigation be forfeited to the Federal Government of Nigeria. The convicts are also to undertake in writing to be of good behaviour.