Justice M. I Sanni of the Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, has convicted and sentenced Joseph Ojo Balogun (a.k.a Robert Alu) and Balogun Abayomi to six months imprisonment for obtaining money under false pretence in some fraudulent online marketing deals.
Balogun was arraigned by the Port Harcourt’s Zonal office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, in 2017 on two – count charges, bordering on obtaining money under false pretence contrary to section 1(i)(a) of Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1(3) of the same Act.
One of the counts read: “That you, Joseph Ojo Balogun (Alias Robert Alu) and Balogun Abayomi, sometime in September, 2016, at Port Harcourt within the Port Harcourt Judicial Division of the High Court, with intent to defraud obtained the sum of Ninety Thousand Naira (N90,000) by false ptretences from Agu Chioma Queeneth under the pretence that you will sell and deliver to her an Apple Iphone 6, the pretext you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence, contrary to section 1(i)(a) of Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under section 1(3) of the same Act”.
Trial commenced on the matter and the Prosecution Counsel, Chukwuegu Adaugo was about to close her case when Balogun opted for a plea bargain by changing his plea to “guilty”, thus paving ways for his conviction. .
The Prosecution Counsel Adaugo and Defence Counsel, Andrew Adeniti agreed on the change of plea.
Justice Sani convicted him accordingly and sentenced him to six months imprisonment, without an option of fine. The convict was also ordered to restitute the sum of N130,000 (One Hundred and Thirty Thousand Naira) only he fraudulently collected from his victims. .
Balogun’s journey to prison began, when he posed as a marketing officer of an online marketing company (jiji.ng.com) and advertised an apple Iphone 6 for sale, at the rate of N90,000 (Ninety Thousand Naira) only.