The police on Wednesday arraigned three persons in an Ikeja Magistrates’ Court for allegedly using the name of Afro-Juju icon, Sunday Adegeyi, aka King Sunny Ade, to swindle members of the public to the tune of N3.1m.
The police charged the defendants – Lawrence Oyedokun, 27; Rebecca Oyebode, 23; and Oyewumi Abiodun, 27 – with four counts of conspiracy, impersonation, stealing and obtaining money under false pretences.
The News Agency of Nigeria reported that Oyedokun and Oyebode lived in Osun State, while Abiodun resided in Oyo State. The last defendant, however, denied the allegations.
The police prosecutor, ASP Clifford Ogu, told the court that the defendants committed the offence in March at Ikeja, Lagos.
Ogu said the defendants created fake Instagram accounts of King Sunny Ade to defraud people.
“The defendants opened an Instagram page with Sunny Ade’s name, advertising that KSA wanted to assist interested people to travel on music tours to Europe, America and Asia.
“They also wrote on the Instagram page that those who were interested in the tour should pay from N50,000 to N100,000, depending on their area of interest.
“People began to pay money into the accounts the defendants provided and they were withdrawing the money daily and promising to contact the victims.
“The defendants were tracked to Oyo State, where they were arrested.
“About N95,000 was recovered from them as they were withdrawing the loot,” the prosecutor said.
The offence, he noted, contravened sections 287, 314 and 411 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.
Section 287 carries three years’ imprisonment for stealing, while section 314 attracts 15 years for obtaining money under false pretences.
The magistrate, J.A. Adegun, admitted the defendants to bail in the sum of N300,000 each, with two sureties each in like sum.
Adegun ordered that all the sureties should be gainfully employed and must show evidence of two years’ tax payment to the Lagos State Government.
He adjourned the case till May 22 for mention.