The Operatives of the Port Harcourt Zonal office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, have arrested four students of the University of Port Harcourt for alleged involvement in internet fraud, according to a report by Vanguard.
This is just as the EFCC also secured the conviction of Chamseddine Waell Mohammed and Dina Jihad Khali who both pleaded guilty to the separate one-count charge of Money Laundering preferred against them by the commission.
The suspects, Prince Hyacinth, Rex Emadifie Oghene, Odili Ifeayi, and Uduak Samuel Williams, were picked up on Thursday from their alleged hideout at Chibiak Avenue, Elenpranwo, Ada George area of Port Harcourt.
In a statement in Port Harcourt by the Public Affairs Department, the commission noted that one Tecno Spark 4 belonging to Prince Hyacinth; one iPhone 11 Pro Max, two Infinix Hot and one apple Laptop belonging to Odili Ifeayi; one iPhone 7 and two iPhone 11 belonging to Rex Emadifie Oghene and one iPhone 8+, one Acer Laptop and one HP Laptop belonging Uduak Samuel Williams, were recovered.
The statement noted that preliminary investigation carried out showed that the suspects were mainly involved in a romance scam and also act as pickers for an organized ring of fraudsters.
It also noted that while Prince Hyacinth parades himself as a Spain-based marine engineer to bait his victims, Rex Emadifie Oghene poses as a rig engineer based in the United State.
It further stated that the two other suspects, Odili Ifeayi and Uduak Samuel Williams present themselves as rig/marine engineers to defraud their victims, noting that between the four, a total heist of $111,500 from 15 victims has passed through their hands.
Meanwhile, when the charge against the two Lebanese was read, both pleaded guilty to the one count bothering on money laundry and smuggling.
Reviewing facts of the case, prosecuting counsel Aso Larrys Peters tendered some documents, which included Letter of invitation from Customs and statements of the defendants, as exhibits.
Principal Detective Superintendent Macaulay Olayinka while being led in evidence by the prosecution counsel, told the court that, the two convicts were arrested for attempting to smuggle a total sum of $890,000 USD (Eight Hundred and Ninety Thousand United States US Dollars) out of Nigeria, through the Port Harcourt International Airport, Omagwa.
However, Justice I. M. Sani of the Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt, Rivers State has a judgment earlier yesterday sentenced the two Lebanese charged with the laundry to two years’ imprisonment with an option of fine of One Million Naira each.