A State High Court in Ilorin, Kwara state on Tuesday has condemned a Yahoo identified as Temitope Charles, to 35 years in jail without a choice of fine.
According to reports, The Presiding Judge, Justice Mahmud Abdulgafar, while conveying his Judgment on a criminal accusation brought against the convict by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), declared that the convict was liable and sentenced him to seven years in jail on every one of the five-check charges.
A statement released revealed by the EFCC revealed that Charles was first charged by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on March 13, 2019, for taking part in internet fraud “Yahoo Yahoo”
One of the five count charges against him reads:
“That you, Ajayi Temitope Charles, popularly known as Teresa Simons on or about the 27th of February, 2019, in Ilorin within the jurisdiction of this honourable court, with intent to defraud, had in your possession document, which you knew contained false pretence, and thereby, committed an offence contrary to Section 6 and 8(b) of the Advance Fee Fraud and other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1(3) of the same Act.”
However, He had pleaded “not guilty” to the charges, provoking the commencement of his trial.
At the end of the trial, Justice Abdulgafar ruled that the EFCC proved its case against him, “beyond reasonable doubts”.
The trial judge held that:
“The evidence of PW1, Olamide Sadiq was left unchallenged by the defendant, all the chats and text messages were printed from his email address in his presence.
“I have considered the testimonies of the PW1, this honourable court is of the opinion that the PW1 is a witness of truth, the Accused Person indeed was in possession of fake documents, and the prosecution has sufficiently linked the defendant to the email address.”
On Delivering his final judgement, Justice Abdulgafar, further rejected as false, the declaration of the convict where he asserted that the Police carried him to the workplace of the EFCC upon the arrival of his arrest following his failure to pay the cash they mentioned for.
“The story of the defendant being sent to the EFCC because he did not pay bribe to the police could not hold water, he lied to the court, I do not believe the evidence of the defendant, and the prosecution has proved this case beyond reasonable doubt,”
Afterwards, Justice Abdulgafar proclaimed him guilty as charged.
Counsel for the EFCC, Ola Sesan, however, opposed the request and urged the court to sentence him according to the provisions of the law.
“Going by the provisions of the Advance Fee Fraud and other Fraud Related Offences Act, the minimum punishment for this type of offence is seven years and maximum of 20 years, the court cannot use its discretion outside the same,” he said.
Justice Abdulgafar, from that point, condemned him to seven years in jail on every one of the five counts. The sentence is to run simultaneously.