The Sokoto State High Court, Sokoto on Tuesday, September 29, 2020 convicted and sentenced six internet fraudsters to prison for fraud. The fraudsters who were prosecuted on one-count separate charges of conspiracy and cheating by the Sokoto Zonal Office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC include; Henry Chukwuma Uche popularly known, Andrew Tucker James, Okereke Ifeayi Daniel, Iyiola Elvis Azuka, Onyeiwu Stanley Chibuike (a.k.a Jonathan Stavidris), Nwanaforo Wilfred Chukwuka, popularly known as Manfred and Nwanaforo Chibuike Shedrack.
The charge reads, thus: “that you Henry Chukwuma Uche also known as Andrew Tucker James, a Nigerian national, sometime between 2018 to 2020 at Sokoto, within the jurisdiction of the Sokoto State High Court, dishonestly represented yourself to one Carle Margarida Brito Santos, a foreign national, resident in Portugal, to be one Andrew Tucker James of the United State of America Marines, deployed to Afghanistan and in that, induced her in love scam to pay you the sum of €3,934 (Three Thousand, Nine Hundred and Thirty-four Euros) through your Access Bank Dollar account and the sum of $17,691.25 (Seventeen Thousand, Six Hundred and Ninety-one Dollars, Twenty Five Cent) through your Polaris Bank Dollar account and thereby committed the offence of cheating, contrary to Section 310 of the Sokoto State Penal Code Law 2019 and punishable under Section 311 of the same Law.”
They all pleaded guilty to the charges labelled against them following prosecution panel, comprising – S. H. Sa’ad, Musa Mela Gwani and Habila Jonathan asked the court to convict and sentence them accordingly, while defence counsel, Shamsu A. Dauda, pleaded with the court to temper justice with mercy as his clients have become remorseful.
Justice Sifawa convicted and sentenced Uche (a.k.a Andrew Tucker James) to 10 years imprisonment with N1,000,000 (One Million Naira)option of fine. He is also to restitute the sum of €3,934 and $17,691.25 (Three Thousand Nine Hundred and Thirty-four Euros and Seventeen Thousand Six Hundred and Ninety-one US Dollars Twenty Five Cent) to his victim through the EFCC and the FBI liaison at USA Consulate, Lagos.
Daniel was sentenced to five years and six months in prison following his conviction on count one and two with N100,000.00 (One Hundred Thousand Naira) option of fine for each of the counts. He is also to restitute his victim €300 (Three Hundred Euros) proceeds of his crime.
Azuka bagged 10 years with N1,000,000 (One Million Naira) option of fine, respectively and to restitute his victim €1,545 (One Thousand Five Hundred and Forty-five Euros) proceeds of his crime.
Chibuike popularly known as Jonathan Stavidris and Chukwuka also known as Manfred got 10 years imprisonment each with N1,000,000.00 (One Million Naira) option of fine each. In addition, each of them will restitute the sum of €5,000 (Five Thousand Euros) or its Naira equivalent to their victims through the EFCC.
Lastly, Shedrack and his brother, Chukwuka popularly known as Manfred, were sentenced to six months imprisonment each, with N100,000 (One Hundred Thousand Naira) option of fine. Chukwuka it could be recalled had earlier bagged 10 years.