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Two suspected fraudsters arraigned for impersonating Anthony Joshua

Two men, Ukhuriegbe Glory Irekpitan and Onyekwa Joshua Chinedum were on Monday, arraigned before Justice S. M. Shuaibu of the Federal High Court sitting in Benin, Edo State, by the Benin Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Monday on a two-count charge of impersonation for each.

They were alleged to have impersonated the British boxer of Nigerian descent, Anthony Joshua, to defraud two ladies of £10,000 pounds and £5,491.23 in London.

One of the counts read: “that you Onyekwe Joshua Chinedum (a.k.a Anthony Joshua) sometime in 2019, did, with intent to defraud, send electronic messages which materially misrepresent facts to Samantha Johnson, a lady in London which messages she relied upon and which made her suffer financial loss in the sum of £10,000, thereby committing an offence punishable under section 14 (2) of the Cybercrime (Prohibition Prevention, Etc) Act 2015.”

The charge against the second defendant read: “That you Ukhuriegbe Glory Irekpitan sometime in 2018 did, with intent to defraud, send electronic messages which materially misrepresent facts to Mrs Zahra Bagun, a lady in London which messages she relied on and which caused her to suffer the financial loss in the sum of £5,491.23, the equivalent of N2,306,220 and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 14(2) of the Cybercrime (Prohibition Prevention, Etc) Act 2015.”

The defendants had pleaded not guilty to the charges preferred against them, which made the prosecution counsel, I.M. Elody, ask for a trial date.

He also asked that the defendants be remanded in the custody of the Correctional Service.

But the counsel to the defendants pleaded with the court to remand them in EFCC custody, a move that was opposed by the EFCC counsel.

Justice Shuaibu ordered that the defendants be remanded at the Nigerian Correctional Centre in Benin City, and adjourned till October 21 for further hearing.

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