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Monday , 19 February 2018

EFCC. Fidelity bank drag oil marketers to court for N7.8bn fraud

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Monday arraigned two oil marketers and their firms for an alleged fraud of N7.8bn.

The defendants – Ogbor Eliot; Godwin Okoronkwo; Danium Energy Services Ltd.; and Petrosol Energy Ltd. – were arraigned on 10 counts before the Federal High Court in Lagos.

In the charges, the EFCC alleged that the defendants conspired among themselves to fraudulently induce Fidelity Bank to deliver a total of N7.8bn to Danium Energy Services Limited.

They were said to have fraudulently obtained the money from the bank on the false claim that their company, Danium Energy Services Ltd., had been contracted by Total Nigeria Plc to make supplies of Automotive Gas Oil.

According to the charges, the defendants on October 5, 2016 first obtained N1.5bn from Fidelity Bank, claiming that their company was supplying 10,000 metric tonnes of diesel to Total Nigeria Plc for a sum of N1.9bn.

Again, on November 15, 2016, they obtained another N1.5bn from Fidelity Bank, claiming that they had been contracted by Total Nigeria Plc to supply another 10,000 metric tonnes of AGO.

Also on January 30, 2017, they allegedly obtained another N3.3bn from the bank on the claim that they had been contracted to supply 15,000 metric tonnes of AGO for the sum of N4,103,100,000.

The EFCC alleged that the defendants approached the bank on other occasions obtaining funds this way on false claims.

The offence was said to have been committed by the defendants between October 2016 and February 2017 using forged documents.

The EFCC prosecutor, Mr. Rotimi Oyedepo, told Justice Oluremi Oguntoyinbo that the defendants acted contrary to Section 8(a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006 and were liable to be punished under Section 1 (3)of the same Act.

He said they also violated Section 19(6) of the Miscellaneous Offences Act, Cap M17, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 and were liable to punishment under Section 1(2)(c) of the same Act.

The defendants, however, pleaded not guilty to the charges on Monday.

Following their arraignment, Justice Oguntoyinbo ordered that they should be remanded in the prison custody while she adjourned till October 11 to hear their bail applications.

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