Swindling Unsuspecting Nigerians In The Name Of EFCC

By Nwangwu Uba

Between last year and now, there have been rumours making the rounds of fraudsters faking officials of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, to swindle unsuspecting Nigerians of millions of   naira. Indeed, the Commission ought to have been convinced about rumours because of the arrests that had been made by the police of fake EFCC operatives  but the matter , according to sources could not go beyond the police station that made the arrest, thus giving  the suspects more time to continue defrauding Nigerians using fake  EFCC identity card .

The Commission may have taken the rumour of the fraudsters  serious  this time around, with the recent impersonation  of Ibrahim Magu, acting Chairman, of the Commission , by one Felix Idowu. The Impersonnation of Magu, the acting Chairman of the Commission with the intention to defraud a victim may have convinced the Commission that the rumour of faking operatives was real and the need to investigate it to the root of the matter.

 Idowu may have penetrated the ranks of the EFCC operatives which may have made it possible to operate with ease without being caught over the years.   .Wilson Uwu jarem, the  EFCC, Spokes person disclosed that before his arrest on Wednesday, January 30, 2019 , the agency  had received an intelligence report that the suspect  while posing  as one of its operatives  had requested for money  from an undisclosed victim  in order to kill a petition  allegedly written against the complainant. The  undisclosed victim may not have found the financial demand of the alleged EFCC official funny as he was said to have taken up it the matter with the Authority to confirm whether  he was actually a staff before dealing with him.

The report of the complainant may have forced Magu and his operatives to swung into action to arrest Idowu by asking the victim to play along. Unknown to the suspect , it was a set up and he fell into the EFCC trap.

Given an insider information, Uwujarem, explained that in the process , the suspect was asked to liaise  with the complainant’s personal Assistant , who was the anti-graft agency undercover agent. Without reading their body language ,  he was said to have been lured  to a popular  supermarket  in Wuse Zone 2, Abuja, where he was promptly arrested on Monday, January, 28, 2019. That marked the end of the extortion  of unsuspecting Nigerians as he ended up in EFCC  custody, awaiting when he would be charged to Court. 

 The EFCC Image maker revealed  that upon the search of the suspect’s exotic  Lexus Jeep,  lots of documents were recovered  including  a letter of investigation  activities on the Commission fake letter- headed- paper  with” ref. No. CTGI/6/Vol. 1 and a letter  of a petition  written to the agency with  stamp received  bearing Magu’s forged signature”.

The arrest of Idowu,the EFCC fraudster, may have forced Magu to look out for other former Staff  of the Commission still parading  themselves as still being in the employ of the agency ostensibly to dupe unsuspecting Nigerians.  Given the dent on its operations by the action of such people, the  Commission on Thursday issued a Statement ”condemning the means through which the fraudsters are using  to defraud  unsuspecting members of the public”.

According to the Commission,” preliminary  investigation revealed that  that the fraudsters  brandish  seemingly authentic  identity cards as staff of the EFCC to prey  or their prospective victim”.  It further revealed  that some of the identity cards being paraded  by the hoodlums  are those of members of staff  who have earlier  reported them  as lost  or stolen at a gunpoint and got police report to be able to  get replacement from the Human Resources Unit of the Commission”.  

Note that many Nigerians who had fallen victims to the hoodlums over the years had looked forward to Magu, regarded as an action man in the Presidency to save the situation from getting worse. He may have listened to their cry going by his assurance that measures have been put in place  to curtail  the activities of the fraudsters

one of such measures, was advising the public to stop patronising  those  who drop the name  of EFCC officials with a promise to resolve an going fraud  case or employment  purposes which they cannot do. Another measure was a plea with Nigerians to  report such extortion cases to the nearest police station for investigation .

Recall that even before Magu could ask Nigerians to report any suspected case of EFCC fraudsters to the police for investigation , the Lagos  state police Command under Edgal Imihimi, have made some arrests of fake EFCC operatives . Take for instance the arrest of Pascal Ugwu  who was said to have allegedly posed as an EFCC operative  ostensibly for defrauding  Wire – My Cake Company of N805, 000.00.

According to the police boss  the fraudster  was said to have connived  with one  Sodiq Ibrahim , a former  employee of the Company to defraud the Company’s Managing Director but luck ran out of them as they were arrested by the police.

 Security experts  believe that if Magau had being serious in tackling the fraudsters, he would have put the necessary measures in place from the day David Lobhbut Nimdul, an alleged police  Constable  posing as a staff of the Commission was  arrested. Nimdul was said to have been arrested by the anti-graft agency  in February 2018 in Port Harcourt, Rivers state.

 His arrest may have forced the Commission into  investigations  which confirmed that he was a Mobile Policeman   who was dismissed in 2012 after an Orderly room trial occasioned by allegations of corrupt practices imputed on him and for which he was found guilty.

  A Statement issued by the Commission, Nimdul  was engaged to assist in the recovery of  N15.3 million but was introduced  as an EFCC  operative to the victim,  forcing him to petition  the Commission for which led to his arrest and further  investigation on him. 

there is no gain saying the fact that other idows and Nimdul  who are well acquainted with the operations of the EFCC , may be forced to quit the illegal business when they see Idowu, particular, heading to  jail. A lawyer who spoke to The Value News  averred that Idowu has reached the end of the road as nothing would save him from  being convicted because of the overwhelming evidence against  him as a fraudster.  

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