By G9ija

Justice Ayotunde Faji of the Federal High Court in Lagos has remanded in prison a Manager with the Ecobank Plc, Ifeanyi Chukwu Azike, for allegedly defrauding some of the bank’s customers of N411 million.

The Ecobank manager was ordered remanded in prison on Tuesday after his arraignment on a three count-charge of obtaining money under false pretence, false representation and fraud by the Police Special Fraud Unit.

Azike was accused of having committed the offence 2016 and 2017.

The police claimed that he fraudulently obtained the sum of about N150 million from one Okafor Ikenna Kelvin, a customer with Account number 0533010936, under the false pretence of buying him Federal Government Treasury Bill in his Bank.

The police also alleged that the accused forged the customer’s Signature, Picture and Letter of Instruction, with which he opened a parallel account as Ikenna Okafor Kelvin with account number 5333063028.

The police further alleged that the accused person without the consent of the bank fraudulently converted the sum of N411 million belonging to the bank to his personal use.

The offences, according to the prosecutor, Daniel Apochi, are contrary to sections 1 (1) (a), 15(1)(2) and 15(2)of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud related Offence Act No. 14 of 2006, and punishable under Section 1 (3) of the same Act.

Apochi said the offence is contrary to and punishable under section 1(2)(2) of the miscellaneous Act. Cap. M17, laws of the federation of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).

The charge against him reads: “That you Ifeanyi Chukwu Azike ’M’ sometime in 2016 and 2017, in Lagos, within the jurisdiction of this Federal High Court with intent to defraud, obtained the sum of N150,000,000.00 (One Hundred and Fifty Million Naira) from Mr Okafor Ikenna Kelvin a customer of Ecobank Plc with Account No:533010936 your employer, by falsely representing to him that you are going to purchase Federal Government Treasury Bill in Ecobank Nigeria Plc for him as Bank Manager, which representation you knew to be false or did not believed to be true and by this conducts, you thereby committed an offence, contrary to Section 1 (1) (a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud related Offence Act No. 14 6V2006 but punishable under Section 1 (3) of the same Act.

Count two reads: “That you Ifeanyi Chukwu Azike ’M’ sometime between 2016 and 2017, in Lagos, within the jurisdiction of this Federal High Court did forge Signature, Picture, Letter of Instruction to opened another parallel account as Ikenna Okafor Kelvin Account Number: 5333063028, knowing it to be false or with intent that it may in anyway be used or acted upon as genuine, whether in Nigeria or elsewhere to the prejudice of Ikenna Okafor Kelvin and Ecobank Plc your employer, you thereby committed an offence, contrary to Section 1 (2)(c) of the Miscellaneous Offence Act, CAP M17 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 1999 (as Amended).”

Count three reads: “That you Ifeanyi Chukwu Azike ’M’ on or about 2016 and 2017, in Lagos, within the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court, did fraudulent convert to your use the sum of N411,000,000.00 (Four Hundred and Eleven Million Naira) being money fraudulently withdraw from your employer bank without their consent, and customer of your bank, Ecobank Plc for enabling you invest on behalf of the Customer, which you failed to deliver with aim of converting the illicit origin of the resources and you thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 15 (1) 2) and 15 (2) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011.”

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