Man who operated illegal bureau de change and swindled customer of N6m jailed seven years

A man who operated an illegal bureau de change in Kaduna for two years and swindled a customer of his money to the tune of N6.1 million was on Wednesday jailed seven years without an option of fine.

Justice Peter Mallong of the Federal High Court, Kaduna, sentenced the man, Sadiq Mustapha, to seven years imprisonment following a two-count charge brought against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

According to the anti-graft commission in a statement on its twitter handle on Wednesday, Mustapha was dragged to court for obtaining money by false pretence to the tune of N6,100,000 while operating illegal bureau de change for two years.

His journey to prison began on December 2, 2019 when he was first arraigned before the judge on a two-count charge bordering on obtaining money by false pretence and operating a bureau de change without authorisation by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

He was said to have been arrested following a petition by one Abdulsalam Danlami Abubakar, who alleged that sometime in 2016, Mustapha lured him into transferring N6.1 million in three separate transactions from his bank account to that of his company, Abueleven Limited, domiciled in Fidelity Bank for exchange with $20,000 equivalent.

One of the counts against him read: “That you Sadiq Mustapha while being the Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of your company, called Abueleven Limited, sometime in 2016, at Kaduna within the judicial division of the Federal High Court of Kaduna, without appropriate licence from the Central Bank of Nigeria and with intent to defraud, obtained from one Abdulsalam Danlami Abubakar, the total sum of N6.1m through your company account called Abueleven Limited with account number 4010185189, domiciled at a bank for changing the money to $20 000 at the rate of N305 per dollar, which you knew all to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1(1)(a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offence Act 2006.”

Apart from the sentence, Justice Mallong further ordered the convict to make a N100,000 restitution to the petitioner having earlier refunded the sum of N6 million to him. He also asked to pay additional N100,000 fine to the Federal Government of Nigeria.

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