A UK based-Nigerian lady, Mrs Ajoke Moriselade last Wednesday, narrated before an Ebute-Meta Chief Magistrate’s Court sitting in Lagos, how she was swindled of N15 million by a fraudster, Salami Peter, who claimed to be Oba of Lagos, HRM, Oba Rilwan Akiolu.
the victim said the fake Oba of Lagos had promised to get her a slot at the Lekki Free Trade Zone. It will be recalled that the said fake Oba of Lagos, Salami Peter, was arraigned before Chief Magistrate Akorede Ajibade by the State Criminal Intelligence Investigation Department, SCIID, Panti, Yaba, Lagos on August 18, 2017, on charges of conspiracy, impersonation, fraud, forgery and stealing.
Though he pleaded not guilty to the charges and was admitted to N1 million bail with two sureties in like sum, he has, however, been unable to meet the bail conditions.
At the resumed trial of the accused, the victim, Mrs Moriselade, while being led-in-evidence by the prosecutor, Inspector Adebayo Oladele, said: “I was duped under false pretense of dealing with Oba of Lagos, His Royal Majesty, Oba Osuolale Akiolu, to procure a slot in the proposed Lekki Free Airport Investment.
“I met the accused person, Salami Oluwatobi Peter, on Facebook in 2016, through a friend request from Oba of Lagos and profile picture was that of Oba Rilwan Akiolu.”
The fraud victim explained that after two months of consistent chat, the accused who disguised as Akiolu, sought for financial assistance that he wants to do business in America worth N250 million.
She stated that upon his request, she advised him to contact people like Tinubu or Fashola to get the assistance. But after several pleadings, she lent him N5 million, with a promise that he would pay back after the contract. Morisalade further stated that after the first assistance, the fake Oba of Lagos told her she should buy a share in a company; that after three months she will be earning a profit that would be deposited in her account in Nigeria.
She added that the alleged fraudster later sent her a form, asking her to deposit an initial N5 million. She stated that after giving him the second N5 million, the alleged fraudster stopped calling her and that she did not receive any update as regards the business.
When she queried the accused person, he was told that the money earlier transferred was too small to be a shareholder and she later sent another N5 million to him.
Asked by the prosecutor, Inspector Oladele, when she discovered the man behind the mask, Moriselade replied that it was when the accused stopped picking her calls. She then added his number to a social media platform with the hope of leaving a message that she discovered that the profile picture was that of a young man and not Oba Akiolu.
Her words: “I decided to play along and disguised to be his admirer to get the truth, as I later sent him two phones and an iPad worth £800 through my younger brother in Nigeria, giving him the defendant line to call for delivery and he actually received it.”
She said when her younger brother gave her the description of the receiver, it tallied with the picture she saw on the social media platform and that was when it dawned on her that she had been dealing with a fraudster.