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EFCC arraigns travel agent for N3.5m fraud

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has arraigned a travel agent, Safiyanu Umar, at the Kano State High Court on a four-count charge of conspiracy and obtaining money by false pretence.

Umar had allegedly defrauded Salisu Bkeke along with eight others of the tune of N3, 050,000 in the guise of helping them obtain visa, air ticket, transportation and accommodation in Saudi Arabia for the 2013 lesser Hajj.

Efforts by the victim to either secure the documents or get a refund of his money were futile, as the suspect became incommunicado.

One of the charges read: “That you Alhaji Safiyanu Mohammed, sometime in June 2013, within the jurisdiction of the High Court of Kano State, with intent to defraud, falsely represented yourself that you are operating a Travel Agency capable of obtaining visa and other travel documents, and obtained the sum N700, 000 (Seven Hundred Thousand Naira) through your account No. 1020105938 domiciled at a new generation bank from Hajiya Hadiza. Mu’azu purporting to secure a visa for travel to Saudi Arabia for Umrah, which pretence you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1 (1) (a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1 (3) of the same Act..”

The accused however, pleaded not guilty to all the charges.

Justice Auta adjourned the matter till May 21, 2015 for trial, and ordered that the accused person be remanded in prison custody.

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