Man jailed for defrauding Canadian lady of $32,220

Justice Kudirat Jose of a Lagos High Court sitting in Ikeja has sentenced a marketer, Ossai Cyril Azuka and Patrick Chibueze Ezeji to five and two years imprisonment respectively for stealing sum of $32, 220 USD from a Canadian lady.

The judge found Ezeji guilty on two-count charge of conspiracy to steal and stealing. His offence is punishable under Sections 516 and 390 of the Criminal Code Law Cap C17 Vol.2 of Lagos State 2003.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) told the court that Ezeji had sometime between February and July 2010 within the Ikeja Judicial Division with intent to defraud, conspired to steal and actually stole the sum of $32,220 from Sheila Lynn Griffiths, a Canadian lady.

Before the judge sentenced him, the defendant’s counsel, Victor Okpara, pleaded with the court to tamper justice with mercy on the grounds that the defendant was a first offender and has never been convicted.

He said that the defendant was a young man with more promising years, adding that he had just been offered admission to study Political Science at the National Open University and had paid back $2,232 being part of the money stolen.

Okpara also told court that the defendant was a skilled graphic artist known around the prison environment where he had been detained since December 3, 2012. “The defendant saved the court’s time by pleading guilty to the offence and under plea bargain agreed to pay back the money.”

The judge, in her judgment, said she noted the plea of the defence counsel, but that the defendant must be punished to deter other youths from taking to crime. She, therefore, sentenced him to two years imprisonment, starting from the date of judgment, while his father guaranteed to pay the balance through EFCC to the victim.

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