Court jails banker for debiting over ₦9million from customer’s account in Benin
A 40-year-old banker, Andrew Nwadiashi, has been sentenced to two years in prison for debiting a customer’s account with a sum of ₦9,354,000.00 in Benin City, Edo State.
Nwadiashi, along with eight others, was convicted and sentenced to prison by Justice M. Itsueli of the Edo State High Court sitting in Benin City on Friday, according to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
The individuals convicted alongside Nwadiashi are Osawa Marvellous, Etinosa Ogieva, Erharruyi Osaigbovo, Isaac Godstime Eghosa, Obasohan Kelvin, Evans Jessa Mike, Timothy Odion, and Festus Efe Iyengunmwena.
Nwadiashi, who had been employed as the Head of Non-Financial Transactions at First Bank’s Warri branch in Delta State, was apprehended based on a complaint lodged by First Bank in 2020.
The bank accused Nwadiashi of disregarding its policies and wrongfully debiting a customer’s account with a sum of ₦ 9,354,000.00. During the investigation, Nwadiashi confessed to the offence.
The charge against Nwadiashi reads: “That you, Andrew Nwadiashi, sometime between 2019 and 2020 within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did take possession of the aggregate sum of N9,354,000 (Nine Million, Three Hundred, and Fifty-four Thousand Naira) transferred into Bank account number: 2033930949 domiciled in First Bank PLC, which funds you knew were derived from your unlawful acts, to wit: stealing, and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 18(1) (a) of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (Establishment) Act and punishable under section 18(2) of the same Act”.
Meanwhile, the other eight defendants were apprehended based on intelligence that connected them to internet fraud activities.
They faced separate one-count charges that encompassed stealing, retaining proceeds from illicit activities, and possessing fraudulent documents. These charges were brought forward by the Benin Zonal Command of the EFCC.
Upon arraignment, the defendants pleaded guilty to the respective charges against them. The prosecution team, consisting of I. M. Elodi, IK Agwai, K.Y. Bello, and Ibrahim Faisal, requested that the court issue appropriate convictions and sentences for the defendants.
Justice Itsueli convicted and sentenced Nwadiashi to two years imprisonment or a fine of ₦200,000.
Nwadiashi had fully paid the aggregate sum ₦9, 654,000.00, being the principal sum and interest, in restitution to the victim of the crime.
While, Marvellous, Odion, Ogieva, and Iyengunmwena were each sentenced to three years of imprisonment, with the alternative of paying a fine of ₦300,000.
Osaigbovo and Mike, the duo, were both sentenced to three years of imprisonment, with an alternative of ₦200,000.
Eghosa and Kelvin each received a one-month prison sentence along with a fine of ₦200,000..
Justice Itsueli then ordered the forfeiture of assets, including a Toyota Lexus ES 330, a Lexus E350, phones, laptops, and the remaining balances in the convicts’ bank accounts, to the Federal Government of Nigeria.
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