Court Sentences ‘Senator’ To Prison Over Fraud Allegation

The Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court in Gwagwalada has handed down a two-year prison sentence to one Tom Makwe, a fraudulent individual who posed as a senator.

Plateau News reports that Makwe was handed the sentence after deceiving a Spanish citizen out of 47,082 Euros.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) brought Tom Makwe to trial on two charges related to online fraud.

Despite pleading guilty and asking for leniency, Justice Aliyu Shafa sentenced Makwe to either pay a fine of N5 million or serve the prison term.

Additionally, Shafa ruled that the N30 million and 1,300 dollars seized from the convict should be returned to the victim, Maria Del Rosario san Jose Garces, through the Spanish embassy in Nigeria.

The court ordered the forfeiture of items recovered from Makwe, such as a black Camry 2017 model car, Samsung S23, Apple iPhone 13 cellphone, and HP EliteBook, to the government, with the proceeds to be sent to the victim through the Spanish embassy in Nigeria.

In his plea for clemency, the convict expressed deep remorse for his actions and behaviour.

 “I am a changed person and plead with the court to tamper justice with mercy. I will never have anything to do with internet fraud again,” he pleaded.

The lawyer representing the accused, Adaji Abel, argued that the defendant should be given a lighter sentence due to their first-time nature, cooperation with authorities, making amends, and providing valuable information for the arrest of other criminals.

Abel highlighted that the defendant had never been convicted before, had worked with the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) investigation, paid back what was owed, and gave important details that led to the capture of other fraudsters.

On the other hand, the lawyer for the state, Deborah Adamu-Eteh, presented evidence showing that the defendant, from December 12, 2021, to November 12, 2022, with the intention to deceive online, posed as Fahad Tonny Makwe, Bryan, and Senator Tompolo.

 Adamu-Eteh mentioned that the defendant claimed to be a Caucasian man named Diplomatic Solicitor with a phone number +34613208672.

She further explained that the defendant, in this role, managed to steal 47,082 Euros from Maria Del Rosario San Jose Garces, a Spanish citizen, through a Bitcoin account that the defendant had set up.

The prosecutor argued that this act was a violation of Section 321 of the Criminal Code and should be prosecuted under Section 324 of the same law.

She had previously mentioned that the defendant had returned N30 million, 1,300 dollars, a black 2017 model Camry, Samsung S23, Apple iPhone 13, and an HP EliteBook to the authorities.

She requested that the court order the forfeiture of the money and items seized from the defendant to the Federal Government through the EFCC.