The Lagos State Command of the State Security Service (SSS), has arrested two suspected fraudsters, Uche Onwuka and Azeez Bello for attempting to defraud one Livinus Yakubu to the tune of $7 million and impersonating an Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) director respectively. Onwuka had lured Livinus, a Nigerian based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, to Nigeria on the pretense of investing $7 million in real estate belonging to business mogul, Mike Adenuga.
However, rather than proceeding with the business negotiation, Uche was said to have introduced the issue of having $3.5 million stamped dollars claiming he needed only $30, 000 to purchase chemical to wash it.
Confirming the arrests, the Director, SSS, Mr. Ben Achu-Olayi, said the victim’s suspicion was aroused and he reported to the service. He said they encouraged him to play along and, on January 7, 2013, the operatives of the command placed the suspect under close surveillance around Camelot Hotel, Victoria Island, where he was scheduled to come and collect part of the $30, 000.
Olayi said during the search conducted at the suspect’s accommodation at Travel House Hotel, in Ajah, many incriminating items including 12 fake internet super-imposed pictures of suspect in the midst of very important Nigerians and documents purportedly signed by President Goodluck Jonathan, were discovered.
He said, “The suspect had several fake internet superimposed pictures with different highly placed personalities like the late president, Umar Musa Yar’Adua; the former president, Olusegun Obasanjo and business mogul, Aliko Dangote amongst others.
“The worst is that the suspect super-imposed several pictures where he was with President Goodluck Jonathan in the presidential office. He portrayed himself as a member of the innercaucus or kitchen cabinet of the president and close ally of prominent business moguls in the country. He has used such gimmicks to lure his victims.” The Director said the suspect has made confessional statement and will soon be arraigned in court.
_____Francis Suberu, National Mirror, February 5, 2013