- EFCC witness proved case beyond a reasonable doubt.
- Defense pleads on behalf of the client being a first-time offender.
An internet fraudster, Temitope Charles has been sentenced to 35 years in prison without an option of fine by a Kwara State High Court in Ilorin.
The Presiding Judge, Justice Mahmud Abdulgafar, while delivering Judgement on a criminal charge brought against the convict by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Tuesday pronounced the convict guilty and sentenced him to seven years in prison on each of the five-count charges with the prison sentence directed to run concurrently.
After agreeing that the anti-graft agency had proved its case beyond a reasonable doubt, the judge noted that the evidence of the only prosecution witness, Olamide Sadiq, an operative of the commission, was very strong and reliable.
”The evidence of PW1, Olamide Sadiq, was left unchallenged by the defendant; all the chats and text messages were printed from his email address in his presence.
“I have considered the testimonies of the PW1, this honourable court is of the opinion that the PW1 is a witness of truth, the accused person indeed was in possession of fake documents, the prosecution has sufficiently link the defendant to the email address,” Abdulgafar said.
The Defence Counsel, A.B Bakare, had earlier urged the judge to temper justice with mercy, saying that his client was a first time offender.
Prosecuting Counsel, Sessan Ola, opposed to the request and asked the court to sentence the convict according to the provisions of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act.
It could be recalled that in March, the EFCC had arraigned Charles before the court on a five-count charge bordering on internet fraud after he was allegedly caught with some documents indicating that he wanted to defraud unsuspecting members of the public.