By G9ija

The Uyo Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has secured the conviction of a known hacker: Micheal John Oluwasegun, and his accomplice, Saviour Peter Edet, before Justice Agatha Okeke of the Federal High Court sitting in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.

They were jailed on July 21, 2022 after pleading “guilty” to three-count charges of conspiracy, fraud and stealing.

This was to the tune of N32 million.

One of the charges against them reads: “That you Michael John Oluwasegun, Saviour Peter Edet sometime in 2021, in Uyo within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, did conspire among yourselves to commit a felony to wit; computer related fraud by knowingly inputting data such as personal banking details stored in a computer without authority, for the purpose of conferring economic benefits on yourselves and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 27 (1) (b) of the Cybercrime (Prohibition, Prevention, etc ) Act 2015 and punishable under Section 14 (1) of the same Act.”

In view of their pleas, EFCC’s counsel, Adebayo Soares, prayed the court to convict and sentence the defendants accordingly.

Delivering judgment, Justice Okeke convicted and sentenced Oluwasegun to two years imprisonment on counts 1 and 3, Edet to two years imprisonment on counts 1 and 2.

All the sentences are to run concurrently.

Also, Oluwasegun was ordered to restitute the sum of N32 million to his victims through the EFCC and instruments used in committing the crime be forfeited to the Federal Government.

The convicts began their journey to the Correctional Centre when they were arrested by operatives of the Uyo Zonal Command of the EFCC for hacking into the accounts of innocent bank customers and draining their savings in the process.

Investigations showed that, Oluwasegun usually hacked into bank accounts of individuals, using the Subscriber Identity Module cards supplied by Edet, whose job it was to snatch mobile phones from unsuspecting individuals, and retrieve the cards with which Oluwasegun usually hack into the bank accounts linked to the SIM cards

In a related development, Justice Okeke convicted two internet fraudsters, Ekong Nyong Ekong and Richard Imoh Bernard, for fraudulent impersonation and obtaining by false pretense.

They were jailed upon their arraignment on two-count separate charges bordering on impersonation and obtaining by false pretenses.

One of the count charges reads: “That you Ekong Nyong Ekong (a.k.a Friedly Patrick Donohoe) sometime in June, 2022 in Nigeria within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, with intent to obtain property and gain advantage for yourself, fraudulently presented yourself as Friedly Patrick Donohoe to one Jane Gynn through electronic chat messages and obtained the sum of Eight Thousand United States Dollars ($8,000.00) and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 22 (2) (b) (i) of the Cybercrime (Prohibition, Prevention etc) Act 2015 and punishable under Section 22 (2) (b) (iv) of the same Act.”

They pleaded “guilty” to the charges when they were read to them

In view of their pleas, Adebayo called two witnesses: Edibo Friday Joseph and Kogi Andrew Japhet, who are EFCC’s investigators, to review the facts of the cases.

The witnesses tendered several documents, which were admitted in evidence as exhibits.

Justice Okeke convicted and sentenced them to one month imprisonment on each of the two counts without an option of a fine.

They were ordered to forfeit all instruments used in committing the crimes to the Federal Government and restitute the sums of $8,000 and $350 respectively to their victims through the EFCC.