A man who paraded himself as a ‘Babalawo’ (Native Doctor), to defraud some unsuspecting members of the public, was arraigned before Justice Lateef Lawal Akapo of the Lagos State High Court sitting in Ikeja area of the state, by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), on Tuesday, February 9, 2016, on a three count charge bordering on conspiracy and obtaining money by false pretense.
The fake herbal doctor, Lekan Arigbabuwo, was arrested on November 10, 2014, by the EFCC sequel to a petition written by one Ogundele Oluwatoba, who alleged that he was duped of over N3 million by the accused, an offence the anti-graft agency said, was contrary to section 1 (3) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act, No. 14, 2006.
According to the EFCC, one of the counts reads:
“Lekan Arigbabuwo, Folorunsho Ojo Seun (at large) and Dapo Aborishade (at large), sometime between the month of August – November, 2014, at Ikeja within the jurisdiction of the Honorable Court, with intent to defraud, conspired to obtain the sum of N3,556,000.00 (Three Million, Five Hundred and Fifty Six Thousand Naira) from Ogundele Oluwatoba on the pretense that the money was meant for supply of herbal medicine which pretense you knew was false.”
But when the charges were read to him, Arigbabuwo pleaded not guilty, and the prosecution counsel Giwa Faleke prayed the court for a trial date and for the defendant to be remanded in prison custody.
The defence counsel, Bryant Idahosa, however, asked the court to remand the defendant in EFCC’s custody, pending the hearing of bail application but the prosecution counsel objected, saying that the EFCC does not have enough space in its custody.
Justice Akapo then ordered that the defendant be remanded in prison custody pending the determination of the bail application and adjourned to April 11, 2016.