The long arm of law has finally caught up with two scammers who cloned Governor Ambode’s phone number to defraud a victim of N50 million.
For allegedly impersonating Lagos Gov. Akinwunmi Ambode in a text message and attempting to commit N50m fraud, two men — Rilwan Jamiu and Balogun Oyewole — were on Monday remanded at Kirikiri Prisons.
Jamiu and Oyewole are facing a three-count bordering on attempting to commit a felony and obtaining money by false pretences at an Ikeja High Court.
The duo denied the charges.
According to the prosecutor, Mr Adebayo Haroun, the duo committed the offences at 12.52 p.m. on February 10, 2016 at Block 11, State Treasury Office, Ministry of Finance, Government Secretariat, Alausa, Ikeja.
Haroun said the men cloned Ambode’s Globacom telephone no. in a text message to Mrs Abimbola Umar, the Accountant General of Lagos State.
“The defendants had in the text message demanded N50m to be transferred by Umar into a company account,” he told the court.
Umar, in her statement to the authorities, said, “On Feb. 10, 2016, I received a text message at exactly 12.52 p.m.
“I initially thought the message is from His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Lagos state because the name with which I saved his number appeared in my inbox.
“The message reads, `AG, urgently transfer N50m to Dayder Limited account number 002806988 Keystone Bank. We will talk later, H.E.
“I became suspicious because His Excellency does not send text messages for any payment, he normally calls his office when the need arises.
“This text message also looked strange because His Excellency would not end his message with H.E nor start with AG.
“This is not his pattern, I put a call to the Governor and he immediately asked me to take the phone to the security to investigate the text since the message did not come from him.”
Justice Sedoten Ogunsanya adjourned the case until Nov. 17 trial.