A jobless man has been arrested for allegedly stealing the sum of $1,950,000 (about N300 million) meant for the payment for oil drilling services in N’Djamena, Chad Republic.
The man, Joshua Ekeocha, 31, was arrested by operatives of the Zone 2 Police Command, Onikan, Lagos, Western Nigeria.
After his arrest and investigation, the police charged him before a Tinubu Magistrates’ Court on a three-count charge of conspiracy to commit felony, to wit, stealing.
The police prosecutor, Supol Chidi Okoye, told the court that Ekeocha and others still at large committed the offence on 22 and 27 May, 2014.
He said the accused collected the sum of $1,950,000 from Gambo Salisu, a Bureau de Change agent in Lagos while pretending to remit it into the account of SAS Petroleum and Dasub Nigeria Limited for the payment for oil drilling services in N’Djamena, Chad Republic.
Okoye said the accused, after collecting the money from Gambo Salisu, escaped and converted the money to his personal use.
He said the accused was arrested at a hideout and charged to court when he could not give a satisfactory account of the money.
He added that the police also impounded the SUV the accused used in committing the crime.
Okoye noted that the offences the accused committed are punishable under sections 409, 312 and 285 of the criminal laws of Lagos State, 2011.
Ekeocha, however, pleaded not guilty to the crime in the open court but Okoye objected to the bail of the accused on the ground that he would jump bail and escape from Nigeria to join his in-law, who is also an accomplice in the matter, in London.
After listening, the presiding Chief Magistrate, Mrs. Y. R. Pinheiro, who stood in for Chief Magistrate Miss A. O. Awogboro, ordered that the accused be remanded in prison custody till 7 November, 2014 when his bail will be considered.
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