Adeniyi Olugbemi, Sokoto

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Sokoto zonal office has arrested three suspects for allegedly defrauding unsuspecting victims in the state.

Parading members of the syndicate at the zonal office in Sokoto on Wednesday, the Zonal Commander, Bawa Usman Kaltungo, said the suspects specialized in defrauding unsuspecting applicants with unexisting jobs opportunities in lucrative federal government agencies like the Nigeria Immigration Service, Nigeria Customs Service and Nigeria Port Authority.

Bawa revealed that the commission swung into operations having received a petition from one Aminu Bunko, a victims of employment scam against Ibrahim Shehu and Ibrahim Sifawa, alleging that in December, 2020 one Aminu Sifawa from Ministry of Youths and Sports introduced him to one of the suspects as someone who can help him secure employment.

According to the zonal commander, “the suspects made the victim believe he had an offer for employment from Nigerian Customs Service, after which the unsuspecting victims informs his friend, Bello Abubakar Wamakko of same opportunity.

“In the course of investigation, it was revealed that the suspects lured and convinced their victims to believe that once they made a payment of 350,000 naira each amounting to 700,000 naira for the two, the offer will be theirs.

“Investigation further revealed that the suspects also made some additional demands from their victims such as transport and training fees bringing the total payment collected from the two suspects to N1,260.00.

“Upon obtaining a search warrant, both Aminu Sifawa and Ibrahim Shehu were arrested while various incriminating documents which includes fake Nigerian Customs Service employment forms and Nigeria Port Authority’s letters were recovered.

“Other items recovered in the suspects house included prepared aptitude test question papers and score sheets for Nigeria Immigration Service.”

He also revealed that the suspect confessed that all documents found in his possession were forged and fabricated by him through the help of one John Danjuma of Mbaka & Co Business Centre in Abuja who was also arrested by the commission.

Bawa further disclosed that one of the suspects, Ibrahim Shehu, initiated and organized a purported Immigration training at Kwannawa Primary School located at Army Day Primary School in Sokoto.

“He also employed the services of a serving Assistant Superintendent of Nigeria Immigration Service, who appeared in his official uniform at the training venue to convince the trainers and make it look genuine.

“The Immigration Superintendent lectured the trainees on the rudiments of Nigeria Immigration Service, prepared exams for them, marked their scripts and awarded scores. He also sold to the trainees what he claimed to be the Immigration manual (photocopy) at the cost of 5,000 naira each.

“He also lured and hired the services of the Officer-in-Charge of the drill, from Sokoto State Vigilante”

Meanwhile, the Zonal Commander while announcing that the suspects will soon be arraigned in court, emphasized that, no federal government agencies or parastatals sells appointment offers not to talk of collecting money from individuals in exchange for job.