Police re-arraign for defrauding Lagos Speaker, Obasa, N9.1m

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Lagos Speaker Mudashiru Obasa Open Grazing
Lagos Speaker Mudashiru Obasa
Mudashiru Obasa was defrauded N9.1m via his Facebook page

Three men, who allegedly hacked the Facebook account of Lagos State House of Assembly Speaker, Mudashiru Obasa, and defrauded him of N9, 188, 100 million, were today, re-arraigned before a Federal High Court.

The three suspects, Frank Nwokobia, 27, Ezeoke Kanayochukwu, 25, and Godwin Essien, 28, were re-arraigned before Justice Oluremi Oguntoyinbo court, on a five count charge bordering on conspiracy, fraud, impersonation and identity theft, by the men of State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department, (SCIID), Panti, Yaba, Lagos.

The three defendants were formally arraigned during the court’s long vacation on the same count charges, before Justice (Professor) Chuka Obiozor.

Upon resumption from the vacation, the defendants’ case file was reassigned to Justice Oguntoyinbo, for rearraignment, and for their plea to be taken.

Deal of the day

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At the resumed hearing today, the prosecutor, Mr. William Olu-Ologun, informed the court of the charge against the defendants, and pleaded with the court for the charge to be reread to the defendants, so that their pleas could be taken.

The three defendants pleaded not guilty to the charges, after it was read to them.

Consequently, their lawyers urged the court to admit their clients to bail in the most liberal terms.

Their bail applications were not opposed by the police.

Following the applications of the lawyers to the defendants, Justice Oguntoyinbo, admitted the defendants to bail in the sum of N5 million, with one surety each.

The judge ordered that the sureties deposit title documents and the Certificate of Occupancy (C-of-O) of their landed property to the court’s Deputy Chief Registrar (DCR).

The judge also ordered that the surety’s official and residential addresses, as well as their phone numbers must be verified by the prosecutor.

Adding that they must tender before the court evidence of three years tax payment.

The trial of the defendants have been adjourned till November 28.

According to prosecuting counsel, William Olu Ologun, the trio, sometime in May, hacked Obasa’s Facebook account and retrieved information with which they withdrew N9.1million from his Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB) Plc account.

Ologun said following Obasa’s complaint, the defendants were arrested by police at different locations in Delta State.

According to him, they confessed to the crime.

The offences, he added, were contrary to Sections 27(1)(b) and 22(2)(b)(ii) of the Cybercrimes Prohibition and Prevention Act, 2015 and punishable under same.