Justice Mohammed Owolabi of the Oyo State High Court, Ibadan, on Thursday, December 19, 2019, sentenced one Hammed Babatunde Mutiu to nine months in prison with hard labour and with no option of fine for visa fraud.
The convict was prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibadan Zonal Office on a 16-count criminal charge of forgery and obtaining money under false pretence in which the court found him guilty of all, sentenced and convicted him accordingly.
His prosecution was sequel to a petition jointly written by four of his victims in which he was alleged to have collected a total of N4, 350, 000 (Four Million, Three Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira) on the pretence that he would secure Canadian visas for them.
Investigations, however, proved that Mutiu merely took advantage of his victims, who were desperate to seek greener pastures outside the shores of the country.
While delivering his judgement, Justice Owolabi who lamented the unending menace of visa racketeering posited that culprits such as Mutiu deserve to be punished accordingly to serve as deterrence to others.
“The offence of which the defendant is charged is very rampant in our society. I therefore found the defendant guilty on counts 1 to 16 and thereby sentence the defendant to nine months imprisonment with hard labour with effect from today, 19th December, 2019,” the judge held.
Apart from N500, 000.00 (Five Hundred Thousand) the convict earlier restituted, Justice Owolabi also ordered him to deliver the sum of N200, 000.00 (Two Hundred Thousand Naira) monthly through the EFCC to his victims “by way of restitution of part of the benefits he derived from his fraudulent acts.”
He was equally ordered to give up his Lexus RX 300 SUV in the sum of N650, 000.00 (Six Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira) as part payment of the restitution of the sums he obtained from the crime.
Media & Publicity
19 December, 2019