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06.09.2004 Crime & Punishment

Court remands five conmen

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Accra, Sept. 6, GNA - Three Nigerian and two Cameroonian conmen, who allegedly defrauded an American Businesswoman of 300,000 dollars under the pretext of delivering to her a box containing 32 million dollars, were on Monday remanded by an Accra Circuit Court.

Davies Olusola, Tunde Igbasan and Michael Emurerhi Oyovwe, all Nigerians, Emmanuel Abunow, alias Berrey Ousman, Eware Arry Johnson, alias Aziz Abudulai, both Cameroonians have been charged with conspiracy, attempt to commit crime and defrauding by false pretences. Johnson is additionally charged with possessing forged documents.

The Court presided over by Mr Williwise Kyeremeh did not take their plea.

It remanded them after Prosecuting Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Paul K. Frimpong said the Police were yet to complete their investigations. The Court asked the Police to conduct thorough investigations into the matter.

Defence counsel had prayed the court to admit the accused persons to bail as they had cooperated with the Police since they were arrested and would not interfere with Police investigations.

The accused persons would reappear on September 14.

ASP Frimpong said the accused persons are believed to be members of "Advance Fee Fraud", popularly known as 419.

The Prosecution said three years ago, Olusola and Igbasan contacted the complainant, Brunilda Daisy Obuhosy, on her website and introduced themselves as Sierra Leonean refugees at Buduburam Refugee Camp in Ghana.

They further told the complainant that the living conditions at the refugee camp was so bad that there was no food and they were at the verge of dying.

The Prosecution said Ms Obuhoyky, therefore, sent them some money. ASP Frimpong said Olusola and Igbasan after acquainting themselves with Ms Obuhoyky pleaded with her to assist them to retrieve their treasure of 32 million dollars, which their late father had bequeathed to them and deposited it at Gold Coast Security in Accra.

During the same period Abunow also contacted the Ms Obuhoyky and introduced himself as a refugee, who was known as Umar while Johnson described himself as a solicitor, who could assist the complainant to process legal documents to retrieve the treasure of 32 million dollars. The accused persons succeeded in collecting 300,000 dollars as legal and processing fees for the 32 million dollars.

ASP Frimpong said on August 20, Ms Obuhoyky and her husband arrived in Ghana on a different mission but decided to see the accused persons. The Prosecution said Ms Obuhoyky invited them to her hotel room and Olusola and Igbasan arrived in the company of one Gideon as the one who would process the documents before releasing the 32 million dollars.

Gideon demanded 22,000 dollars and thereafter took her to a spot near the University of Ghana, Legon, and introduced another person as his boss.

The Prosecutor said Gideon and the man showed Ms Obuhoyky a box said to contain the 32 million dollars and she paid the 22,000 dollars to Gideon's boss.

On August 28 instead of Gideon and the man releasing the 32 million dollars, they decided to meet the complainant in her hotel. The Police swooped on Olusola and Igbasan, who posed as Gideon and his boss after the complainant had alerted them.

The Prosecution said the Police arrested Abunow and Johnson two days after meeting the complainant.

Oyovwe was also arrested when he also asked the complainant to pay 15,000 dollars in exchange for five million dollars.

The Prosecution said when the Police searched their rooms, photographs of boxes containing dollars, gold, diamond and fake document with letter heads of Power Security Company Limited, Power Security Trust Company and a Ghanaian passport bearing the name of Aziz Abdulai were found on Johnson.

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