EFCC Arraigns Eight Internet Fraudsters In Abuja For Impersonation Tom Cruise

A Federal Capital Territory High Court has convicted eight internet fraudsters for impersonation.

The fraudsters were apprehended and arraigned in court by operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Abuja Zonal Command.

EFCC said in a statement on Friday that the convicts were arraigned before Justices Chinyere Nwecheonu, A.A. Akobi, A.I. Kutigi, and V.S. Garba of the Federal Capital Territory High Court, Abuja, on Wednesday.

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Five of the convicts: Emmanuel Ogochukwu, Ugochukwu Mathias, Aderele Adekunle, Abdullahi Adebola Ayinde, and Matthew Ushie Adie, were prosecuted before Justice Nwecheonwu of the FCT High Court, Kuje, on one-count charges each.

One of the convicts, Abdullahi Adebola Ayinde, was charged with impersonation and conspiracy for posing to be an American actor, Tom Cruise.

EFCC said Ayinde obtained $80 from one Anne Line Bergh, alias Sarafina Carly, a Norwegian citizen, after opening an Instagram account with the username Tom Cruise.

While Matthew Ushie Adie was charged for posing to be a citizen of the United Kingdom (UK) on Facebook to defraud one Jeremy Justice Meir of ₦4,410,000 million.

The anti-graft agency also stated that Ogochukwu, posing as Kob Sook Dennis on Facebook, defrauded one Yen Tran, and he also pretended to be Arjun Sharma on Instagram, defrauding unsuspecting females of $400.

According to the charges, he pretended to be Finalisa, the daughter of Lee Bruce, a Hong Kong contractor, and obtained 3000 RMB.

Justice Nwecheonu sentenced all five defendants to one year in prison with options of fines as follows: Emmanuel Ogochukwu and Abdullahi both bagged a fine of ₦200,000 each, while Aderele is to pay a fine of ₦300,000. Ugochukwu and Adie were fined N250,000 each.

The court also ordered all convicts to forfeit the proceeds of crime to the Federal Government.

In a similar development, one Raphael Samuel Maduabuchi, who was prosecuted before Justice A.A Akobi of the FCT High Court Gwagwalada on a one-count charge for cheating by impersonation.

Maduabuchi, who pleaded guilty to the charge, presented herself as a white woman named ‘plasticjuggernaut787’ from the United States of America (USA) to obtain a total sum of $500 from Damonnava as transport fare to meet him.

The court, however, sentenced Maduabuchi to community service, including cutting the grass within the court premises, and forfeited her Samsung Galaxy S9 phone to the Federal Government.

Justice A.I. Kutigi of the FCT High Court Jabi also found Prince David guilty on a single count of cheating by impersonation after he created a Reddit application with nude female pictures under the name Ladiphilipol and obtained $150 from one Josef pretending to be in a romantic relationship with him.