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Nigeria Prison’s Staff, 5 Others Arrested For ATM Fraud By EFCC

Valentine Chinyem

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Operatives of the Kaduna Zonal Office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, have arrested six fraudsters who specialise in defrauding innocent Nigerians by using bank details obtained through sim swaps and Automated Teller Machines (ATM).

The suspects include Urulo Ikenna Henry, an Inspector with the Enugu Command of Nigerian Correctional Service. Others are Ugonna Nelson Owete, Ugonna Samuel Okafor Obinna, Chigbo Paschal Chidiebere, Oha Chukwujekwu Kingsley, and Ahamefula Francis Izuchukwu

This was contained in a statement made available to journalists by Head, Public Affairs, EFCC, Kaduna Zonal Office, Zainab Sani Ahmed.

According to the statement, the suspects were arrested in separate operations, sequel to a petition by a customer of Access Bank, alleging that monies were illegally transferred from his account without his authorisation. According to the petitioner, sometime in February 2019, he opened an account with Diamond Bank (now Access Bank) which he funded to the tune of N5m and instructed the bank to open a fixed deposit account, with the sum of N1m from the earlier account, as opening balance.

The complainant said he was receiving regular alerts until the end of March 2019 when the alerts stopped coming, prompting him to demand his statement of account from the bank. Upon receipt of his bank statement, he discovered to his chagrin that the sum of N2,911,480m had fraudulently been transferred to several accounts between April 5 -9, 2019 without his authorisation.

The statement explained further: “Upon the receipt of the petition, the zonal office of the commission immediately swung into action and traced some of the funds to three of the suspects, Samuel Okafor Obinna, N1,500.000; Chigbo Paschal Chidiebere, N210,000 and Oha Chukwujekwu Kingsley N300 000. All three were promptly arrested.

“Further investigation revealed that Ikenna Henry, Nelson Owete who was earlier arrested and paraded by the Enugu State Police Command for crimes bordering on conspiracy and armed robbery) and Ahamefula Francis Izuchukwu were equally complicit in the fraud.

“They were arrested. Upon arrest, items recovered from Urulo Ikenna Henry included a Toyota Camry, documents of two plots of land, two Nigeria Housing Fund passbooks (one belonging to him and the other bearing Ani Wilfred Ochechukwu), 17 ATM cards of different banks bearing different names, two Nigerian Correctional Service identity cards, two smartphones and two Nokia phones, one NHIS card, one voter’s card, 26 starter packs and 15 SIM cards of various networks.

“Two sachets of Cannabis Sativa, eight ATM cards bearing different names and banks, six starter packs, and four Sim cards of various networks, one empty ECOWAS Passport, one NDA dependant ID card and a voter’s card were also recovered from Francis Izuchukwu

“The suspects will soon be charged to court as soon as investigations are concluded”.