Businessman docked over alleged N1.2 million vehicle fraud

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A 46-year-old businessman, Ibrahim Abubakar, on Tuesday appeared before an Ikeja Magistrates’ Court in Lagos charged with obtaining N1.2 million from a customer he promised selling a car to.

The defendant, a resident of Abule-Egba in Lagos State, is being tried for conspiracy, obtaining money under false pretences and stealing.

Abubakar, however, pleaded not guilty to the three-count-charge.

The prosecutor, ASP Ezekiel Ayorinde, told the court that Abubakar and others still at large committed the offences on 9, December  2019 in Oke Odo area along the Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway, Lagos.

He said that the defendant obtained N1.2 million from one Mr Usman Samsindeen with the pretext of selling a fairly used vehicle to him, a representation he knew to be false.

“The defendant who worked with a transport company persuaded the complainant to buy a fairly used vehicle.

“After the complainant had given the defendant the money, the defendant refused to release the vehicle to the complainant.

“The complainant later discovered that the vehicle had been sold to another person.

“Efforts made by the complainant to retrieve his money proved unsuccessful.”

Ayorinde said that the complainant reported the matter in a police station which led to the arrest of the defendant.

The prosecutor said that the alleged offences contravened Sections 287, 314 and 411 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Section 287 prescribes three years’ jail term for stealing while Section 314 attracts 15 years for obtaining money under false pretences.

Following the defendant’s plea of not guilty; the magistrate, Mrs B.O. Osunsanmi released him on bail of N300,000 with two sureties in like sum.

Osunsanmi said that the sureties must be gainfully employed and show evidence of two years’ tax payment to the Lagos State Government (LASG).

The magistrate fixed the further hearing for February 10, 2020.

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