Criminal Law

EFCC arraigns director for N157m contract fraud

The Port Harcourt Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on March 22, 2022, arraigned one Esther Tombara Krukrubo, a director of Priko Nigeria Ltd and her Company, Priko Nigeria Ltd, before Justice A. T. Mohammed of the Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.

They were arraigned on eight-count charges bordering on conspiracy, forgery and obtaining One Hundred and Fifty-Seven Million Naira by false pretence contrary to Section 1(1) (a) and (b) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act. 2006 and punishable under Section (1) (3) of the same Act.”

One of the counts read:

“That you, Esther Tombara Krukrubo, Priko Nigeria Ltd, Ridge Koripamo (at large) sometimes in May, 2021 at Port Harcourt within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did obtain the sum of  One  Hundred Million Naira (N100,000,000.00) from one Tupere Bruno by false pretence under the guise of execution of contracts awarded by Fullview Management Ltd and National Agricultural Mechanization Cooperative Society (NAMCS), which pretext you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1(1)(a) and (b) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1(3) of the same Act”.

Another Count read:

“That you, Esther Tombara Krukrubo, Priko Nigeria Ltd., Ridge Koripamo (at large) sometimes in May, 2021 at Port Harcourt within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did directly take possession of the sum of Fifty Seven Million Naira (N57,000,000.00) which you reasonably ought to know that the money is obtained by false pretence from one Tupere Bruno purportedly for the execution of contracts awarded by Fullview Management Ltd and National Agricultural Mechanization Cooperative Society (NAMCS),  and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 15(2)(d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011, as amended and punishable under   15(3) of the same Act”.

They, however, pleaded “not guilty” to the eight-count charges preferred against them.

In view of their pleas, prosecution counsel, I. Agwu prayed the court to fix a date for commencement of trial and to remand the defendant.

Justice Mohammed ordered that, the 1st defendant be remanded in prosecution’s custody pending an application for her bail by her counsel.

The matter was adjourned till April 8, 2022 for hearing of bail application and continuation of trial.

Esther ran into trouble when the Commission received a petition alleging that she conspired alongside her company, Ridge koripamo (her father) who is at large and defrauded her victim of the above sum of money through a phony contract deal.

It was also revealed that the complainant transferred monies to the defendants in tranches of One Hundred Million Naira (N100, 000,000.00) and Fifty Seven Million Naira (N57, 000,000.00), into her company’s account domiciled in Wema Bank.

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