© 2019 - International Centre for Investigative Reporting
BIZARRE: Court sentences man to three years in prison, but can pay N30,000 as fine
FOR scamming two intending National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), members to the tune of N120,000, Justice Justice Mohammed Mohammed of the Sokoto State High Court Sokoto, on Thursday sentenced one Wakili Yusuf Oladapo to three years imprisonment.
Justice Mohammed however, gave Oladapo an option of fine of N30,000.
The convict was prosecuted on amended one-count charge of obtaining by false pretence by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Sokoto Zonal Office, having defrauded two intending NYSC members by deceiving them to part with the sum of N60, 000 each, totaling N120,000 on the false promise to help them secure redeployment to their choice states.
According to a statement by Tony Orilade, EFCC acting spokesperson, Oladapo’s road to jail began when one of the victims petitioned the Sokoto Zonal Office of the Commission, alleging the crime against him.
The petitioner said he met the convict through social media network of a school Whatsapp group, where he advertised that he could get corps members redeployed to states of their choice and that intending NYSC members should contact him.
The petitioner said he and another intending NYSC member fell for the scam and were defrauded of a total sum of N120, 000.00 by the convict.
Oladapo was consequently arrested by EFCC operatives and arraigned in court.
The one-count charges reads: “That you Wakili Yusuf Oladapo between the 13th and 24th day of September, 2019 in Sokoto within the Juridical Division of the High Court of Justice of Sokoto State, with intent to defraud, did obtain a total sum of N120,000.00 from Aladetan Michael Olubodunrin, whom you falsely represented yourself to him as being a staff of National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), who could have him redeployed to a state of his choice, a pretence you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 310 of the Sokoto State Penal Code Law, 2019 and Punishable under Section 311 of the same Law.”
He pleaded guilty to the charge, upon which prosecution counsel, Buhari Mohammed Balarabe, asked the court to convict and sentence him in line with the extant laws.
Defence counsel, Shamsu A. Dauda, however, pleaded with the court to temper justice with mercy as his client was a first time offender who has become remorseful.
In convicting and sentencing the defendant, Justice Mohammed equally ordered that he made full restitution to his victims.