Court Convicts 4 for Illegally Operating on Nigerian Waters as 2 Internet Fraudsters Bag Jail Terms

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Benin Zonal Office on Friday Octorber 11, 2019 secured six convictions before Justice E. Nwite of the Federal High Court Warri, Delta State.

Four of the convicts who were arraigned separately on one count charge each are Paul Edorena, Friday Oghenero, Onoja Emmanuel and Charles Ehifuoma.
They were arraigned for offences that borders on illegally operating in the Nigerian waters without licences.

The charge against Edarano reads: “That you Paul Edarano on or about 23rd April, 2019 in Warri, Delta State within the jurisdiction of this honourable court did without licence/lawful authority brought into Nigeria territorial waters, a Cambodia Vessel MT Miracle with IMO No 8936827 depriving the Federal government of Nigeria of revenue and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 21 of the Coastal and Inland Shipping (Cabotage) Act No. 5 ,2003 laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 and punishable under section 40 of the same Act”.

Edorena and his co-travellers pleaded guilty when their charge were read to them

In view of his plea, the prosecution counsel, Aso Larry Peters prayed the court to convict the defendant accordingly. However, the defence counsel, R .A. Ekpe pleaded with the court to temper justice with mercy as he said the defendants were first time offenders who have become remorseful since they were arrested.

Justice E. Nwite sentenced the four defendant to a fine of N600,000 each.

The Commission also secured the convictions of Amadin Collins and Ebhohimen Thaddeus, for internet fraud before Justice Nwite.

Collins was convicted on one count charge of impersonating David G, an American national and using the fake identity to defraud unsuspecting victims.

The charge against Collins read: “That you Amadin Collins (alias David Gomes) and Benjamin Amadin ( now at large ) sometimes between 2018 and June 2019 in Ugbor area of Benin City within the jurisdiction of this honourable court did fraudulently impersonate the identity of one David Gomes, an American in your yahoo account where you sent love scam mails and other fraudulent documents to unsuspecting ladies through the internet which documents you claim emanated from the said David Gomes with the intent to obtain money from the ladies and you thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 22(2)(b)(ii)of the Cybercrime Prohibition and Prevention etc Act 2015 and punishable under Section 22(2)(b) (iv) of same Act”.

Justice Nwite convicted and sentenced Amadin Collins to six months imprisonment with an option of N2 million fine while Thaddeus was sentenced to two months imprisonment with an option of N200,000 fine

The judge also ruled that the sentence does not restrain the EFCC from seizing any item further traced to the defendant if it is discovered to be proceed of crime. All items recovered from the convicts are to be forfeited to the Federal Government and the convicts are to undertake in writing to be of good behaviour henceforth.

Author: News Editor

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