BY OLUGBENGA SOYELE
The Lagos State Special Offenses Court, seated in Ikeja on Wednesday, sentenced and sentenced an unemployed man, Lawal Sholaru, to six months in prison for defrauding an American, David Geobel, of $ 1,200 in a fraud on -line.
The trial judge, Mojisola Dada, handed down the judgment after the convict pleaded guilty to a charge of obtaining money under false pretenses against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
The judge, however, gave him an option of N100,000 fine for defrauding Geobel.
In pronouncing the sentence online during a virtual lawsuit on Wednesday, Judge Dada said the convict did not waste time in the court and was sorry.
“The defendant's timely plea of guilty is very impressive and commendable; he showed great remorse for his action.
“He also unconsciously spent about two months in custody. In the interests of justice, the defendant is sentenced to six months in prison, ”he said.
Judge Dada said the sentence will start on March 18, 2020, when he was first arrested.
The judge also ordered the convict to lose his vehicle and any other property recovered from him by the EFCC as a crime product for the federal government.
“He will commit to good behavior and never to be involved in any other crime. This is the court's sentence, ”she said.
After the trial, defense attorney Mr. Kunle Aina thanked the court.
Early in the process, EFCC prosecutor Samuel Daji gave a brief summary of the facts of the case.
Daji told the court that after an intelligence report received by the commission; the convict was arrested on March 8, 2020 at the Lakers Club, Ikorodu, Lagos on suspicion of involvement in Internet fraud.
He said the convict made a confessional statement in which he admitted to defrauding an American citizen, David Geobel, in the amount of $ 1,200.
“He also admitted to representing himself as Alicia White.
"Further investigations were carried out on the defendants' e-mail address and fraudulent documents in which the defendant represented himself as an American general was discovered," he said.
The EFCC prosecutor, during the trial, presented the defendant's confessional statements dated March 8 and 11, as well as the alleged fraudulent documents found in Sholaru's possession.
He said the documents were admitted as exhibitions.
"The investigations revealed that the defendant had no other source of livelihood than Internet fraud and his car was purchased with the proceeds of the crime," said Daji.