419: Court slams N1.5m bail on travel agent

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Visa Scam

The prosecutor said that the accused obtained N8.25 million from the complainants on the pretext of procuring a Cyprus visa for them, which he knew was false.

An Ikeja Magistrates’ Court on Friday slammed a N1.5 million bail on a 49-year-old travel agent, Akintola Eyitayo, charged with N8.25 million visa scam.

Eyitayo, who resides in Ikotun area of Lagos, had pleaded not guilty to a three-count charge of conspiracy, stealing and obtaining under false pretences.

He is accused of obtaining the money from five intending travellers  –  Benjamin Adebayo, Victoria Okugbe, Nurudeen Aditu, Chioma Chukwuemeka and Mathew Nosiru – on the pretext  of procuring a Cyprus visa for them.

The Magistrate, Mrs O.A Layinka, who granted the bail, said that the accused should produce two sureties in like sum, who must be gainfully employed.

She said that the sureties should show evidence of two years tax payment to the Lagos State Government and adjourned the case till October 2 for mention.

Earlier, the prosecutor, Sgt. Donjor Perezi, told the court that the accused committed the offences sometime in December 2016, at Ijaiye area of Lagos.

Perezi said that the accused obtained N8.25 million from the complainants on the pretext of procuring a Cyprus visa for them, a representation he knew was false.

He said that the five complainants gave the money to the accused, having no idea that he was planning to defraud them.

The prosecutor said that the complainants claimed that the accused gave them fake visas, and when they realised, demanded that he should return their money.

He said that the accused, however, refused to refund their money.

Perezi said the offences contravened sections 287, 314 and 411 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that sections 287 and 314 prescribe three and 15 years imprisonment for stealing and obtaining by false pretence respectively, while section 411 prescribes two years for conspiracy.



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