Internet Fraudster Bags One Year Imprisonment In Port Harcourt
Justice E. A. Obile of the Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt, Rivers State has convicted and sentenced Obu Gabriel Ebibo to one year imprisonment for impersonation and obtaining money by false pretense.
He was convicted on Wednesday, June 8, 2022 after pleading ‘guilty’ to two -count charges preferred against him, upon being arraigned by the Port Harcourt Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.
One of the charges read: “That you Obu Gabriel Ebibo (alias Kenneth Gibson) on or about the 1st November, 2021, in Port Harcourt, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court with intent to defraud obtained an aggregate sum of Six Hundred and Eighty United States Dollars ($680.00 USD) on the pretence that, the money was meant for crypto currency investment, a pretext you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1 (2) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud-Related Offences Act 2006 and punishable under Section 1 (3) of the same Act”.
He pleaded “guilty” to the charges when they were read to him. In view of his plea, prosecution counsel, F .O. Amama prayed the court to convict and sentence the defendant accordingly. Counsel to the defendant, B .J. Jeoffrey, however, urged the court to temper justice with mercy stressing that, “he is a first- time offender who does not have previous criminal records”.
Justice Obile convicted and sentenced the defendant to one year imprisonment with an option of fine of Five Hundred Thousand Naira (N500, 000.00) payable into the Consolidated Revenue Account of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The Judge also ordered that the iPhone X mobile phone recovered from the convict be forfeited to the government.
Ebibo’s journey to the Correctional Service started when he was arrested by operatives of the Port Harcourt’s Zonal Command of the EFCC in connection with internet-related offences. Investigation showed that the convict had been involved in internet fraud by falsely presenting himself as one Kenneth Gibson to his victims, thereby defrauding them of the sum of Six Hundred and Eighty United States Dollars ($680.00 USD).