Peer-to-Peer Crypto Trader Convicted In Lagos 

Oct 6, 2023 - 21:25
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Peer-to-Peer Crypto Trader Convicted In Lagos 

By Adedeji ADEMUYIWA 

Nigeria - One Lawrence Success Karinate, a Peer-to-Peer, P2P, crypto trader was on Friday, October 6, 2023, convicted  for computer-related fraud by Justice Nicholas Oweibo of the Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos.

Karinate was prosecuted by the Lagos Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on one-count charge bordering on cybercrimes, an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 22(2)(b) of the Cybercrimes (Prohibition etc.) Act, 2015.

 

The count against him reads: "That you, Success Lawrence Karinate, sometime in 2023, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court,  with intent to defraud, fraudulently held out yourself on social media platforms, as a female, bearing the name "Jessie Randall", a fashion influencer , to unsuspecting members of the public, with intent to gain advantage for yourself and you thereby committed an offence, contrary to and punishable under Section 22(2)(b) of the Cybercrimes (Prohibition etc.) Act, 2015". 

He pleaded "guilty" to the one-count charge preferred against him and following his guilty plea, counsel to the EFCC, Usman Abubakar Ahmad, called a witness, Taiwo Owolabi, an operative of the EFCC, to review the facts of the matter.  

Owolabi said the defendant, alongside others, was arrested in the Lekki area of Lagos  State on May 26, 2023. 

 

"Upon his arrest, he was brought to the EFCC office, where his iPhone and HP computer were analyzed.   

Fraudulent documents were printed out from his devices, and he made restitution to the tune of ₦100,000. (One Hundred Thousand Naira).  

He was further interrogated, and admitted to have engaged in a pig-butchering scam and benefitted the sum  of $2000 (Two Thousand United States Dollars) from it.

 

Pig butchering scam is a type of fraud in which criminals lure victims into digital relationships to build trust before convincing them to invest in cryptocurrency platforms.

Usman, therefore, applied to tender, in evidence, the defendant’s extra-judicial statement, fraudulent documents printed out from his IPhone,  laptop computer as well as the management cheque issued by him. 

Justice Oweibo admitted them as exhibits  A, B, C and C1, D and E respectively and convicted him as charged. 

In his allocutus, Karinate expressed regret for his involvement in the criminal activity and assured the court that he would never engage in internet fraud again.

His counsel, Chikezie Kingsley, prayed the court for mercy, stressing that defendant was  a first-term offender. 

In his judgment, Justice Oweibo sentenced him to a fine of ₦200,000 (Two Hundred Thousand Naira).

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