FBI Suspect, Oyediran, Jailed One Year

Justice Mahmood Abdulgafar of the Kwara State High Court sitting in Ilorin yesterday convicted and sentenced an internet fraudster, Joseph Oyediran, to one year imprisonment.

Oyediran, one of those declared wanted by the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

He was prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ilorin Zonal Office.

The Commission had earlier arraigned the convict on five count charge to which he pleaded not guilty. Earlier, the convict had reached a plea bargain agreement with the EFCC which made the prosecution to amend the charge.

He then pleaded guilty to the one-count amended charge.

Count one of the amended charge reads:  “That you, Joseph Oyediran (alias Joe MG Graves), between April 2015 and June 2015, in Ilorin, within the jurisdiction of this honourable court, did cheat by impersonation when you pretended to be Joe MG, a white male, with gmail account gravesmjoe@gmail.com, and fraudulently deceived Andrea Smith,  an American citizen, to send N2,392, 105 after you made her believe you were in love with her and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 321 of the Penal Code and punishable under Section 324 of the same Penal Code.”

During the trial, the prosecution called the head of Advance Fee Fraud section of the EFCC in Ilorin, a Principal Detective Superintendent, Olamide Sadiq, who gave account of investigations carried out by his team on the matter.

He said: “My lord, on the 24th of July 2019, the commission received a petition from the Federal Bureau of Investigation against the defendant.  The FBI alleged that Oyediran was involved in business email compromise, romance scam and other fraud related offences. Based on investigations, the suspect was arrested and confessed to the crime.”

Delivering judgement, Justice Abdulgafar said the testimonies of the prosecution witness, the pleas of the defendant and documents presented were enough to conclude that the prosecution was able to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt.

He said: “The convict is hereby sentenced to one year imprisonment while his one plot of land located at Wara, behind Ilorin West Local Government Secretariat and the sum of N800,000 recovered from him should be forfeited to the Federal Government.”