By Dipo Awojobi – The Department of State Security (DSS) on Wednesday arraigned two artisans before an Isolo Magistrate Court for allegedly cloning the mobile line of Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode in order to perpetuate a N50 million fraud.
The suspects, Rilwanu Jamiu and Balogun Stanley Oyewole, who claimed to be cocoa dealers were said to have attempted to initiate a N50 million transfer with the said mobile line.
Prosecuting counsel from the DSS, Mr. Peter Okerinmodun told Chief Magistrate Adeola Adedayo that the suspects were arrested after using the cloned mobile line of the Governor to send a text message to the Accountant General of the State requesting for transfer of N50 million on February 10, 2016
The two suspects, who conspired with others now at large, pleaded not guilty to the charges, while the prosecutor requested that they should be kept in protective custody pending the outcome of the legal advice of the Directorate of Public Prosecution (DPP) in view of the fact that their lives could be endangered by other suspects who are on the run.
But Magistrate Adedayo overruled the request of Okerinmodun, saying the DSS ought to have kept them in custody judging by the fact that their lives could be in danger.
According to her, “Since the offence for which the accused persons were charged to court was bailable and the fact that the Magistrate Court is a court of summary trial, I am inclined to grant bail to the accused persons.”
She therefore granted the accused bail in the sum of N1 million each and two sureties in like sum, ruling that one of the sureties must be a religious or community leader within the jurisdiction of the court, and that the accused persons must provide five years tax clearance certificates.
The Chief Magistrate, however, ordered the accused persons to be remanded in Kirikiri Prison pending the fulfillment of their conditions, and adjourned the case to May 10, 2016.