The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Uyo Zonal Command, has secured the conviction of two bank officials, Daniel Akpan Eno and Mbuk Idongesit, before Justice Edem Ita Kufre of the Cross River State High Court, Calabar, for conspiracy and theft of funds in the account of a deceased customer of a commercial bank.
The duo was convicted on Wednesday August 4, 2021 after pleading guilty to separate one count charge bordering on criminal conspiracy and fraudulent transfers.
A third defendant, and alleged accomplice, Victor John Okon pleaded “not guilty”. His trial was adjourned till August 10, 2021 for consideration of bail application.
Justice Kufre convicted and sentenced Mr Akpan to three months imprisonment with an option of fine of N50,000, while Mr Idongesit was sentenced to three months imprisonment with an option of N30,000 fine.
The convicts’ journey to prison started on May 23, 2021 when Mr Idongesit (alongside one Utibe George — currently at large) approached Akpan with the burial programme of one Godfried Godwin Osso, a deceased customer of the Bank, whom George (at large) claimed was his step father, with a plot to steal from the deceased’s account.
On May 24, 2021, George concluded the deal with the convicts and also contacted a Teller (Victor Okon – the 3rd defendant) from another branch of the bank to ease access to the funds in the account of the deceased. A 50% sharing formula was agreed upon by the conspirators and the plot was executed.
The commission waded in following a petition from the bank, alleging suspicious dissipation of monies in the deceased account into the accounts of family members and acquaintances, from where they were diverted to personal use.
Investigation revealed that on June 19, 2019, Victor Okon connived with George Ifiok Utibe (at large) and received the sum of N1,500, 000. Daniel Akpan also benefited the sum of N1,040,000 while Godwin Mbuk benefited N130,000.
The judge ordered the convicts remanded at the Nigerian correctional facility until they pay their fines, while Victor was remanded at the commission’s detention facility pending the hearing of his bail application.
This is coming days after SaharaReporters exposed how a worker with Polaris Bank stole over N20 million from the account of a customer, Ajibola Sanusi with account number 28122***.
Checks on the account statement had shown that a total of N19,732,190 was stolen by an employee of the bank between July 5 and 12, a few weeks after Sanusi called the bank and directed that the account should be blocked.
Using proxies, the money was transferred to different accounts belonging to Gbenga Adebisi Florence, Abdulazeem Olamide Bello, Dudafa Preye, Sakirat Adesiju and Shukurat Tayo Ibitoye without Sanusi’s authorisation.