BY Matthew Dike
Police operatives attached to Area ‘B’ Apapa Command, Lagos State, have arraigned two men, Oladeji Oluwole Tunmise, 38, and one Aluko Toba Julius before an Apapa Magistrate court ,Agbo Malu for allegedly defrauding a man, Julius Ebhohimen and three women, Uche Umeobi, Ezeanyim Ngozi and Umeojiego Princess Angela ;’f’ of the sum of N10, 265,000.00.
Nigerian NewsDirect gathered that Ebhohimen,53, died on September 25, 2020, same day Tunmise was released from detention at Area ‘B; Police Command. He was buried at his hometown, Uromi, Edo State on November 6, 2020.
The accused persons and others at large are facing a 13 – count charge of allegedly conspiring among themselves to commit felony to wit stealing; obtaining money under false pretence; and forgery.
The police said that the accused persons obtained the cash money under false pretence that they (accused persons) should secure admission for the victims’ children, at University of Lagos.
In the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th charge , the prosecutor, ASP Fred Asu said that the first accused person, Tunmise and others now at large “did steal the sum of six million, two hundred and ten thousand Naira (N6,210, 000.00) belonging to Uche Umeobi, ‘f’, Ezeanyim Ngozi, ‘f’ and Umeojiego Princess Angela ‘f’ and thereby committed an offence punishable under 287 of the criminal law of Lagos State, 2015.”
Asu said the accused persons allegedly obtained N2,120,000.00 from Uche Umeobi at Ojo Barracks within October and November, 2020, they also obtained N2,090,000.00 from Ezeanyim Ngozi at Abule Shan within same period. While the accused persons allegedly obtained N2,000,000.00 from Umeojiego Princess Angela, at Alakija, Lagos.
The women claimed that the money was meant to secure admission for their children, namely; Chinwendu Umeobi, Chinenye Ezeanyim and Ejike Umeojiego, respectively, at University of Lagos.
Meanwhile, the accused persons in a similar crime swindled Ebhohimen the sum of N4, 055,000.00. The prosecutor told the court that the accused persons “did steal the sum of four million, and fifty five thousand (N4,055, 000.00) Naira, property of one Julius Ebhohimen ‘m’ and thereby committed an offence punishable under section 287 of the criminal law of Lagos State, 2015.”
The 8th count charge added another accused person, Aluko Toba Julius, who was a staff of University of Lagos.
Nigerian NewsDirect gathered that Julius was suspended from the school because of this case. The court said that Julius, Tunmise and others at large between January 30, 2020 and August 28, 2020, forged University of Lagos 2020 JAMB Admission request form candidate bio data, and University of Lagos 2020\2021 Admission Request Form (Slot) which “you signed as an Admission officer and gave to the complainant’s daughter, Mercy Ebhohimen purported to have originated from the office of the Registrar University of Lagos, a representation you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence punishable under section 365(1) of the criminal law of 2015.”
On the 9th charge, the court said that Julius and others at large obtained N1,400,000.00 Naira from Ebhohimen “on the pretence that you will secure admission for his daughter, Mercy Ebhohimen.”
The presiding magistrate, Mrs. Adegite while ruling on the matter, asked the two accused men whether they were guilty or not and they both pleaded “not guilty.”
Adegite granted the the first accused person, Tunmise bail in the sum of N1 million with two sureties in like sum, one of which must be a property owner within the jurisdiction, and must have three years tax clearance while the second accused person, Julius was granted bail in the sum of N500, 000.00 with one surety in like sum – preferably a senior staff of University of Lagos, with payslip and letter of appointment. The magistrate added that all the surety’s documents, including the address of the office and residence must be verified while the surety should provide a letter of introduction from the University of Lagos Authority.