The trial of one Ikemefuna Iwunoh for an alleged N38.5million fraud before Justice Mojisola Dada of the Special Offences Court sitting in Ikeja, Lagos continued with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, presenting its second witness, Joseph Gandapa, and also closing its case.
Iwunoh, who was first arraigned in December 2019, is facing a two-count charge bordering on stealing and obtaining by false pretence.
One of the counts reads: “Ikemefuna Iwunoh, between the 22nd May, 2018 and 3rd September, 2018 at Lagos, within the Ikeja Judicial Division, being an account officer to Joseph Innocent Gandapa in Investment – One Financial Service Limited induced the said Joseph Innocent Gandapa to transfer a total sum of N38, 500,000 to Uacin Global Ventures by falsely representing to Joseph Innocent Gandapa that he will get a higher percentage of interest which pretence you knew to be false.”
He pleaded “not guilty” to the charges, prompting the commencement of his trial.
At today’s sitting, Gandapa, a staff of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, and victim of the fraud, told the Court that the money he had invested in Investment-One, supposedly through Iwunoh, was his life savings.
Led in evidence by the prosecution counsel, N.M,. Anana, the witness narrated how he met Iwunoh, and got assurance that he would help with the investment.
He said: “At the time the investment was to mature, the defendant was not forthcoming and I became troubled. “I placed a call through to Investment-One and that was where I got the shocker that they were not aware of any such investment.
“I visited him and he was telling me to calm down.”
Realising that he had been defrauded, Gandapa said he approached the Police, but “they kept asking for money; so, I got frustrated and petitioned the EFCC.”
Thereafter, he identified the petition he submitted to the EFCC as well as a bundle of documents attached to it, which were all admitted as exhibits against the defendant.
Anana told the Court that the prosecution was closing its case.
Consequently, the Judge adjourned till September 13, 2021 for the defence to open its case.