Police officers of the State Criminal Investigation Department, SCID, Panti, Yaba, Lagos have arrested the Chairman Bookshop Owners Association in Mushin market, Mr Festus O of Fesco Bookshop and two accomplices for conspiring to pirate and sell the Iyaloja Playbook.
The Police swung into action after a petition was submitted to the Deputy Commissioner Of Police, DCP, SCID, Fayoade Adegoke by the Author and Publisher of the literary Playbook listed in the Lagos State Curriculum for JSS 3, 2021/2022 academic section.
After a sting operation by the officers led by Inspector Kehinde Pemisire using undercover agents, pirated copies of the book were found and bought in some of the bookshops owned by the suspects, copies were even sold to students at the Chimax Bookshop in the presence of the undercover agents and officers who witnessed the transaction before identifying themselves to the shop owner.
The author and publisher, Tayo Aderinola, stated that over N15 million had been invested on the book with less than N2 million recovered from the investment, alluded that the pirates have made it difficult for him to recover his investments on the publication.
He noted that he approached the same Chairman of the Bookshop Owners in October 2021 last year for a possible arrangement for marketing the book and curbed piracy.
Aderinola said “I had to approached the Chairman and offered them to market the book and they demanded for just 300 copies and which I promptly supplied to them, but to my surprise they couldn’t finish selling 300 copies by January.
He noted that, “In December I received information from some teachers in Mushin schools that they’ve discovered fake copies of the Iyaloja Playbook in Mushin, so we had to commence investigation and we realized the Chairman was distributing fake copies of the book to bookshops in Mushin and Oshodi markets. We also got information that he also used some teachers to sell to some schools.
“In the first week of January, we had to withdraw all the remaining copies supplied the Mushin market through their stockist, Okoro Francis of Humility Bookshop, while our investigation continue.
“Others involved in this fraudulent act will also be arrested and they will all be charged to court for prosecution as soon as the police conclude with their investigation.
“I sincerely appreciate the Nigeria Police for doing a thorough job in apprehending the fraudulently wicked pirates, piracy discourages creativity and it is a great economic crime deserving commensurate punitive measure. I am trusting that this will get the deserved attention, so as to serve as a deterrent to others” the National President Community Media Practitioner Association concluded.