First Bank, 3 Others’ Trial Over N10M Fraud Begins May 13

The trial of First Bank Plc, its Trade and Relationship manager, Mazamaza branch, Innocent Chidozie Amadi and two others, over alleged N10, 015, 172, million fraud, before a Federal High Court, Lagos, is to commence on May 13.

Two others to face trial alongside First Bank Plc and its manager are: Chukwuma Nnadiekwe and his company, Nilorch Global Services Limited.

The customer allegedly defrauded by First bank and others is one Mrs. Ogochukwu Nkiruka Ezeakunne.

The Special Fraud Unit (SFU), of the Nigeria Police Force, Ikoyi-Lagos, had on February 17, arraigned First Bank Plc, it’s manager and two others before the court on a seven count-charge bordering on conspiracy, obtaining under false pretence, fraud, issuing of dud cheques and forgery.

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The offences which according to the prosecutor, Mr. Chukwu Agwu, a Deputy Superintendent of Police, are contrary to and punishable undrr sections 8, 1(a)(b)(c)(2)(3) of the advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act 2006. And section 1(2)(c) of the Miscellaneous Offences Act, 2006.

Also, the offences also contravened sections 17(b) of the Money Laundering (prohibition) Act, 2011, (as amended). And section 1(1)(b)(I) and (ii) of the Dishonoured Cheques Offences Act, 2004.

The accused had pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Justice Sule Hassan who presides over the court fixed that trial, after granting bail to the accused persons.

SFU in a charge marked marked FHC/L309c/18, alleged that First Bank, its Trade and Relationship Manager, Amadi and other defendants between January 2014 and January 2015, conspired among themselves to commit felony to wit: obtaining money under false pretence, money laundering, forgery, and issuance of dud cheques.

First Bank Plc and its Trade and Relationship Manager, Amadi were alleged that with an intent to defraud, fraudulently obtained the said money from thei victim, Mrs. Ezeakunne, with the understanding that the money would be transfer too Capital Trust Limited, a subsidiary of the bank, but failed to do so.

Both First Bank and Amadi were also alleged to have on January 22, 2014, forged the bank’s Local Currency Funds Transfer form with serial number 1955576, which they inserted the name of Nilorch Global Services Limited, and Diamond Bank Plc’s account Number 0034615888, as the beneficiary of the money instead of Capital Trust Limited.

The third and fourth defendants, Nnadiekwe and Nilorch Global Services Limited, were alleged to have on April 9, 2015 and December 29, 2017, with intent to defraud issued a Diamond Bank Plc’s cheque number 00000305 and a Stanbic IBTC Bank’s cheque number: 00000129 to the fraud victim, Mrs. Ezeakunne, for the money fraudulently received from her account number 3040106396 domiciled in First Bank.

Count one of the charge against the defendants read: “that you Raphael Chukwuma Nnadiekwe ‘M’, Innocent Chidozie Amadi ‘M’, First Bank of Nigeria Plc, Nilorch Global Services Limited, and Diamond Bank of Nigeria Plc and others at large between the months of January, 2014 and January, 2015, within the jurisdiction of the honourable Court did conspire amongst yourselves to commit felony to wit: obtaining money under false pretence, money laundering, forgery and issuance of dud cheque and thereby committed an offence punishable under section 8 (a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006.

Count two reads: “that you innocent Chidozie Amadi ‘M’ being an employee of First Bank of Nigeria Plc, on or about the same dates at Lagos, within the jurisdiction of the honourable court, with intent to defraud did obtain by false pretence about N10, 015,172.00 (Ten Million, Fifteen Thousand, one Hundred and Seventy-Two Naira only) from one Ogochukwu Nkiruka Ezeakunne ‘f’ on the understanding that you will transfer the said money to Capital Trust Limited, a subsidiary of First Bank of Nigeria Plc on her behalf, a representation you know to be false and thereby committed an offence punishable under section I(a)(b)(c)(2) and (3) of the Advance Fee Fraud and other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006.

Count three reads: “that you Innocent Chidozie Amadi ‘M’ being an employee of First Bank of Nigeria PLC on or about 22th January, 2014 at Mazamaza branch of First Bank of Nigeria Plc, Lagos, within the jurisdiction of the honourable court, with intent to defraud did knowingly forge First Bank of Nigeria Plc Local Currency Fund Transfer Form with serial number 1955576 by inserting the name of Nilorch Global Services Limited and Diamond Bank Plc account number 0034615888as the beneficiary of the sum of N10, 015,172.00 (Ten Million, Fifteen Thousand, One Hundred and Seventy-Two Naira only) instead of Capital Trust Limited, a subsidiary of First Bank of Nigeria Plc, to the prejudice of one Ogochukwu Nkiruka Ezeakunnc ‘f‘ and thereby committed an offence punishable under section 1(2) (c) of the Miscellaneous Offences Act, 2006.

And count seven reads: “That you Raphael Chukwuma Nnadiekwe ‘M’ and Nilorch Global Services Limited, on or about 29th December, 2017, at Lagos, within the jurisdiction of the honourable court, with intent to defraud did issue a Stanbic IBTC Bank Plc Cheque 11000000129 to the tune of N1,000, 000. 00 (One Million Naira Only) to one Ogochukwu Nkiruka Ezeakunne ‘F’, in satisfaction of part of the money you mated from her account no. 3040106396 domiciled of Nigeria Plc through your Nilorch Global Services Limited account number 0033615888 domiciled at Diamond Bank Plc and when presented for payment in the bank was dishonoured on the ground that no funds or insufficient funds were standing to your credit in which the cheque was drawn and thereby committed an offence punishable under section 1(1)(b)(I)(ii) of the dishonored Cheques Offences Act, 2004”.

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