By Mojola Aturamu

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, yesterday arraigned one Eucharia Ekezie before Justice Olasumbo Olajumoke Goodluck of the Federal Capital Territory High Court sitting in Maitama, Abuja, on a ten-count charge of conspiracy and obtaining by false pretence.

Ekezie alongside one Hamid Bakoji allegedly defrauded over seventy job applicants to the tune of N3.920million under the pretext that the money would be used to facilitate employments for them in various federal government establishments including Central Bank of Nigeria, Nigeria Communication Commission, Federal Inland Revenue Service and National Assembly.

This offence however contravenes Section 8 (a) and 1 (1) (a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, 2006.

One of the counts reads:

“That you, Mrs. Eucharia Ekezie and Hamid Bakoji (now at large), sometime between the 15/10/2012 and 06/12/12 in Abuja, within the jurisdiction of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, with the intent to defraud, did obtain an aggregate sum of N1, 120, 000.00 (One Million, One Hundred and Twenty Thousand Naira) via your Skye Bank account No. 1018539796 from one Eze Gereldine Uzoamaka under the false pretence that the said sum will be used to secure employments for some job applicants in Federal Government establishment, which you knew was false and thereby committed an offence, contrary to Section 1 (1) (a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1 (3) of the same Act.”

The defendant pleaded not guilty the charge.The counsel to EFCC  urged the court to fix a date for trial. However, the lawyer for the defendant told the court that he had a pending application for bail of his client and begged the court to admit the defendant to bail. Ekezie was granted bail in the sum of N2million with two sureties in like sum.The sureties must be civil servants not below Level 14 and Ekezie must also submit her international passport to the court Registrar.

The case was adjourned to June 13 – 14 for hearing.

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