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Justice M. Itsueli of Edo State High Court has convicted and sentenced the duo of  Obinna Cosmas Clement and J. Sunkami to eight years imprisonment

Clement and Sunkanmi were jailed on Monday,  September 5,  2022, after pleading guilty to one- count of separate charges,  bordering on retention of proceeds of criminal conduct and possession of fraudulent documents,  upon being arraigned by the Benin Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission,  EFCC.

The charge against Clement reads: “That you Obinna Cosmos Clement on or about 1st May 2022 in Benin City, Edo State within the jurisdiction of this honourable court did retain the sum of N120,423,688.65 in your United Bank for Africa account number: 2247175272  knowing that same represent proceeds of your criminal conduct to wit; Cybercrime and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 17(a) of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (Establishment ) Act 2004 and punishable under Section 17(b) of the same Act.”

Based on their pleas, prosecution counsel, Francis .A. Jirbo prayed the court to convict and sentence them accordingly. However. Counsel to the defendants,   Pascal Ugbome and Jeffery Iluobe Itua,   prayed the court to temper justice with mercy, stressing that the defendants have become remorseful of their actions.

Justice Itsueli convicted and sentenced Clement to three years imprisonment with an option of a fine of N200,  000 while  Sunkanmi bagged five years imprisonment with an option of a fine of N200, 000.

The judge also ruled that the total sum of N120,423,688.65 found in Clement’s United Bank for Africa account, Mercedes Benz GLK 350,  iPhone 12 Promax recovered from him and iPhone X recovered from Sunkami, all being proceeds of crime,  be forfeited to the Federal Government of Nigeria through the EFCC.

The convicts’ journey to the Correctional Centre began when they were arrested by operatives of the Benin Zonal Command of the EFCC, for internet-related offences.  Investigations linked them with proceeds of crime running into N120million, which they could not account for.  They were subsequently prosecuted and convicted.

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