Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Ilorin zonal office on Thursday secured conviction of one Joseph Oyediran, one of the suspects indicted by the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) in the United States of America.
Justice Mahmood Abdulgafar of a Kwara State High Court convicted and sentenced Oyediran to one-year imprisonment, relying on all the documents tendered and evidence presented by the EFCC.
The commission had earlier arraigned the convict on five-count charge and he pleaded not guilty, but later approached the EFCC for a plea bargain agreement.
After the agreement was made, the prosecution amended the charge.
Count one of the amended charges reads, “That you, Joseph Oyediran (alias Joe MG Graves) between April, 2015 to June 2015, in Ilorin within the jurisdiction of this honourable Court did cheat by impersonation when you pretended to be one Joe MG a white male with gmail account email@example.com, and fraudulently deceived one Andrea Smith, an American citizen to send #2,392, 105.00 after you made her believe you were in love with her and you thereby committed an offence contrary to section 321of the penal code and punishable under section 324 of the same penal code ”
He pleaded “guilty” to the one-count amended charge.
While reviewing the facts of the case, the prosecution called the head of Advance Fee Fraud Section of the commission in Ilorin, Olamide Sadiq, who gave an account of investigations carried out by his team in the matter.
Sadiq, a principal detective superintendent told Justice Abdulgafar that, “My Lord, on the 24th of July 2019, the Commission received a petition from the Federal Bureau of Investigations against the defendant. The FBI alleged that Oyediran was involved in business email compromise, romance scam and other fraud-related offences, based on investigations, the suspect was arrested and confessed to the crime”
Delivering judgment on Friday, Justice Abdulgafar said the testimonies of the prosecution witness, the pleas of the defendant and documents presented were enough to conclude that the prosecution was able to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt.
“The convict is hereby sentenced to one-year imprisonment while his one plot of land located at Wara, behind Ilorin West Local Government secretariat and the sum of N800,000 recovered from him should be forfeited to the Federal Government”, he judge said.