Saturday, 11 June 2011
Justice Shuaibu Mohammed of the Federal High Court sitting in Kaduna has convicted and sentenced to seven years imprisonment the Chief Executive of Credence Investment Ltd, a stock broking firm, Mr. Oladele Shittu. The convict was brought before the court on a 136-count charge by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), over a N139 million fraud.
Shittu was first arraigned by the EFCC on Tuesday, March 23, 2010, on a 136-count charge of fraud. His arrest followed series of petitions from his supposed clients who turned out to be victims that he allegedly lured into investing their money in stocks between 2006 and 2007.
The 136-count charge detailed how Oladele collected various sums totaling about N139, 626,170.20, from over 130 victims within the jurisdiction of the court with the intent to defraud and obtain under the pretence that he was investing in the stock market .
When the matter came up on Friday, June 10, 2011, for judgment after months of legal fireworks by both the prosecution and defence counsel, Shittu was found guilty on all the 136-count charge and consequently sentenced to 943 years which is to run concurrently for a period of seven Calender years.
On counts 135 and 136, which bordered on non-registration of his stock broking firm with the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC), the judge agreed with the prosecution that there were sufficient evidence linking the accused with the crime and intention to defraud by falsely claiming to be a stockbroker and his company a brokerage firm.
While Dapo Laoke represented the convict as defence counsel in the case, Sa’ad Hanafi Sa’ad stood in as the EFCC counsel.
Among Oladele’s victims are Brigadier General Adamu Bura Maraw and Colonel G.S Udoenang who lost N1,113,000.00 (one million one hundred and thirteen thousand naira only) and N1,000,000.00, respectively.
Count one of the charge against Oladele reads: “That you Shittu Oladele, being the director of Credence Investments Limited sometime, between 2006 and 2007, within the jurisdiction of this honourable court with intent to defraud, obtaained the sum of N 46,016,526.60 from one Musa Yakubu and others under the false pretence that you were into stock market business and was going to buy shares for them from the stock market which you did not, and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1(1) (a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and other Fraud Related Offences Act 2006 and punishable under section 1(3) of the same Act.”
Source: The Tribune