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Sallah tragedy: Gas tanker kills 15 in Niger

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Sallah tragedy: Gas tanker kills 15 in Niger

At least 15 people lost their lives yesterday at the popular Dakwa junction in Madalla Niger State, on the outskirts of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja in an accident involving a gas tanker, a Sharon car and several tricycles popularly called Keke Marwa.

Witnesses, among them an official of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) drafted to accident scene on rescue mission, told New Telegraph that the accident, which occurred about 2.50p.m., was triggered by loss of control on the side of the tanker driver.

The tanker driver, the FRSC official said, had successfully dodged a cyclist (an okada rider) who suddenly crossed highway from the opposite direction.

He explained that while the tanker driver was able to dodge the cyclist, he lost control of the vehicle and rammed into a stationed Sharon car with unspecified number of passengers. All the passengers, including the driver, died.

The tanker, he added, crushed several tricycles parked on the roadside with their operators and passengers inside.

New Telegraph counted five badly damaged tricycles and a makeshift shop which was severely destroyed by the truck.

A witness said: “You know this spot is notorious for truck accidents. The truck, which we later discovered to be carrying gas, was heading to Kaduna Road from probably inside Abuja. An okada rider, with a female passenger, crossed from the opposite direction. He crossed from in between Eco Bank and Oando filling station. The tanker driver dodged him, but lost control of the tanker in the process. The Sharon space bus parked with passengers by roadside was crushed. It went down further the slope crushing several tricycles waiting for passengers.”

The victims’ bodies had been evacuated to the morgue of the General Hospital, Suleja, while the injured were admitted at the same hospital for treatment.

The spot, the Madalla market axis, is notorious for accidents. There had been attempts in the past by Niger State government to relocate the weekly market to a safer location but it never worked out.

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Metro and Crime

Drug trafficking: Nigerian faces 10 years in US jail

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Drug trafficking: Nigerian faces 10 years in US jail

…judgement fixed for Feb 2020

 

A Nigerian woman, identified simply as Tammy, has pleaded guilty to charges of drug trafficking and bank fraud in the United States and may spend up to 10 years in jail. In a statement issued by the Department of Justice, US Attorney’s Office (Eastern District of Virginia) on November 5, Tammy pleaded guilty to the allegations of conspiring with others to import more than five kilogrammes of cocaine, as well as to her role in a separate bank fraud scheme, and to making false statements relating to fraudulent claims submitted to Medicaid for reimbursement. US Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, Zachary Terwilliger, said: “Tammy is a ‘triple threat’ of criminality – drug trafficker, a fraudster, and a liar.

“Tammy, a Nigerian immigrant, who has spent the last two decades with the privilege of living in the United States as a lawful permanent resident, clearly has zero respect for American laws pertaining to our borders, controlled substances, our financial system, or our health care system.”

With her guilty plea, Tammy faces a mandatory minimum of 10 years in prison for the cocaine importation charge when sentenced on February 28, 2020. According to court documents, Tammy, who is 40 years old, recruited men from the greater Washington D.C. area to act as drug couriers. She was also accused of opening bank accounts in the couriers’ names, assisting them in obtaining passports and visas, and booking their travel arrangements.

Tammy’s suspected couriers travelled primarily to São Paulo, Brazil, where they picked up kilogramme quantities of cocaine hidden in the lining of soft-sided briefcases or attaché cases. Altogether, law enforcement seized nearly seven kilograms of cocaine at three different US airports from three separate couriers allegedly recruited by Tammy.

The statement also revealed that in addition to the cocaine importation scheme, Tammy also submitted falsified and fraudulent claims to the D.C. Department of Health Care Finance, a health care benefit programme funded by Medicaid. It was reported that Tammy worked as a personal care aide for various home health agencies in the Washington D.C. area, and in order to receive payment for services rendered, Tammy was required to submit time sheets signed by her clients documenting the services rendered. Instead of submitting time sheets for time actually worked providing health care services, Tammy recruited Medicaid recipients to act as her “patients” and to sign her falsified timesheets in return for a small amount of money as a kickback.

On at least two occasions, Tammy billed DHCF for home health services she claimed to have provided while she was out of the country. Apart from the cocaine importation and the home health services scheme, Tammy allegedly used her African goods business in Maryland also to carry out a bank fraud.

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Metro and Crime

Police rescue four-year-old boy kidnapped by relative

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Police rescue four-year-old boy kidnapped by relative

The Anti-kidnapping Squad of Operation Puff-Adder in Kano has rescued a four-year-old boy kidnapped by a relative of his who demanded a N4 million ransom.
The Kano Command’s Spokesperson, DSP Haruna Abdullahi Kiyawa said on Sunday at about 1500hrs, a complaint was received at Zango Division of the Force that unknown persons kidnapped one Abdulrahman Dalha ‘m’  4-years-old of Zangon Rimi Quarters, Ungogo LGA Kano State and demanded a ransom of N4 million.
Haruna said the Command’s Anti-kidnapping team of Operation Puff-Adder was immediately mobilised and directed by the Command’s Commissioner of Police to track down, arrest and bring the perpetrators to book within 24 hours.
“The operatives swung into action where community policing tools were utilized and that led to the arrest of the principal suspect, one Anas Isah ‘m’, 22-year-old of Zangon Dakata Quarters Kano, while planning to collect the ransom,” he explained.
DSP Haruna noted that suspect confessed to committing the crime and led Puff-Adder operatives to the house of his aunty at Inusawa Village, Ungogo LGA where the kidnapped victim was rescued.
The Police said suspects will be charged to court for prosecution after investigation is completed.

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Metro and Crime

Publisher in court over alleged N4m fraud

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Publisher in court over alleged N4m fraud

A 42-year-old publisher, Benjamin Adedoyin, on Friday appeared in a Kubwa Magistrates’ court, Abuja, over alleged fraud involving  N4 million.

The police charged Adedoyin, who lives in Dutse, Abuja, with criminal breach of trust, cheating and intimidation.

The Prosecutor, ASP Ejike Peters, told the court that the complainant, Stanislaus Ntekop, in April  gave the defendant N4 million to use as down payment for a N6.4 million contract for the supply of books to the Central Bank of Nigeria.

Peters alleged that when the defendant completed the job, he refused to pay the complainant his money back.

He said when the complainant called to demand for his money, the defendant threatened to kidnap or kill him.

Peters said the case was reported by Ntekop on April 10.

He said the offence contravened the provisions of sections 312, 322 and 397 of the Penal Code.

The defendant, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.

The Magistrate, Muinat Oyekan admitted the defendant to bail in the sum of N100,000, with one reasonable surety in like sum.

Oyekan adjourned the case until December 4, for continuation of hearing.

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Metro and Crime

I bit my boyfriend’s penis ‘out of frustration’, woman tells police

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I bit my boyfriend’s penis ‘out of frustration’, woman tells police

A Florida woman allegedly bit her boyfriend’s penis and threatened him with a knife after she accused him of wanting to have sex with another woman, a report said.

The alleged assault happened during an hours-long drinking session in Miami Beach that ended on Wednesday at about 3 a.m., a local ‘NBC’ affiliate reported.

Esperanza Gomez, 33, was drinking beers with her boyfriend when a female friend joined them at about midnight, according to the report.

The friend left a short time later — but Gomez became enraged and accused her boyfriend of wanting to bed the woman, reports the New York Post.

She allegedly shouted at him, grabbed him by the arms and “began to poke him with a knife,” according to a police report obtained by the station.

She then “bit his penis out of frustration,” he later told police.

Gomez was arrested and hit with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, according to county records.

Her bond was set at $6,500.

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Metro and Crime

Court dismisses Busola Dakolo’s rape suit against Fatoyinbo

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Court dismisses Busola Dakolo’s rape suit against Fatoyinbo

…says case sentimental, empty λ We’ll appeal, says plaintiff’s counsel

 

An Abuja High Court sitting at Bwari yesterday dismissed the case of alleged rape filed by Mrs. Busola Dakolo, against the Senior Pastor of Commonwealth of Zion Assembly (COZA), Biodun Fatoyinbo.

The court, in its judgement, also exonerated Fatoyinbo, saying that the case of the plaintiff was purely sentimental and empty.

The court, however, awarded the cost of N1 million against Busola.

About five months ago, Busola, wife of Nigerian singer, Timi Dakolo, accused Fatoyinbo of raping her while she was a teenager.

She later approached the court to demand justice and compensation.

Precisely, Busola accused Fatoyinbo of raping her in 2002.

On his part, the COZA senior pastor filed an objection to the suit and supported it with an affidavit, saying that Busola’s statements were false and concocted to embarrass, scandalise and ridicule him.

He averred in the affidavit that from the inception, Busola sought the attention of the media and press, and brought the civil action even while the police investigation was ongoing.

According to him, her false claims were stale and an abuse of judicial process.

After parties adopted their briefs, the trial judge, Justice Othman Musa, held that the matter amounted to injustice, and an abuse of judicial process.

He further held that the case was purely sentimental and empty.

Musa awarded cost of N1 million  against Busola and held that it would have been 10 times more but resisted it because, according to him, there are women with legitimate claims who may approach the court for justice.

According to the court, the case carries more of cruelty in it than justice.

Before the judgement was delivered, Fatoyinbo had described the suit as frivolous and statute barred.

Fatoyinbo, through his counsel, Dr. Alex Izinyon, SAN, in a preliminary objection dated September 20, 2019, said the reliefs sought by Busola in the suit were not grantable, which made the suit incompetent.

Izinyon argued that the court lacked the jurisdiction to entertain the suit and that the suit was frivolous and a palpable abuse of court process.

In an affidavit deposed to by Ademola Adetuberu, Executive Senior Assistant to Fatoyinbo, he averred that  the substratum of the claimant’s suit was the mere purported  allegation of emotional and psychological distress as a result of the said purported mere allegation of rape against the defendant.

He further averred that the said purported mere allegation of rape was still a subject of investigation by the police.

In the substantive matter, Busola, through her counsel, Pelumi Olajengbesi, sought the order of the court to compel Fatoyinbo to publish a clearly worded apology to Busola on the front page of at least two national newspapers and two national television stations for seven days running consecutively.

However, Olajengbesi said they would appeal the judgement.

He said: “We have received several calls after the ruling of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory sitting at Bwari this morning (yesterday) seeking our view on the decision of the court, hence, this statement.

“The court ruled that the matter is statute-barred because the events that crystallised to the cause of action took place 16 years ago and that the claimant, Mrs. Busola Dakolo, has only six years within which to seek redress in court in line with the statute of limitation.

“While we acknowledge the time of the court, we know in accordance with the Nigerian judicial system that the court’s decision is not final as it is glaringly contestable. For all intent and purposes, having seen several sponsored misleading news reports in the media, we are duty-bound to state that the court has not and did not exonerate Biodun Fatoyinbo.

“As it stands, the substance of the matter has not received any judicial attention. Biodun Fatoyinbo, through his lawyers, has only argued that the court should not allow the matter to proceed to trial because it is an event that occurred long ago and hence out of time. We shall therefore in this circumstance approach a superior court to intervene for a better appreciation, and take a more expansive view of the suit considering that the subject matter is one that is novel in our clime.”

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Metro and Crime

Internet fraudster bags six months imprisonment in Ilorin

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Internet fraudster bags six months imprisonment in Ilorin

Justice Sikiru Oyinloye of a Kwara State High Court sitting in Ilorin yesterday convicted a man, Abolarin Kayode, for internet fraud.

Kayode was prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ilorin Zonal Office.

Oyinloye sentenced the convict to six months imprisonment.

Earlier, after his arraignment, the convict had pleaded with the commission for plea bargain, having considered his involvement in internet fraud and the proof of evidence gathered against him by the anti-graft body.

The amended charge reads: “That you,  Abolarin Kayode, on or about 6th day of February 2019, in Ilorin within the jurisdiction of the High Court of Kwara State, did attempt to cheat by impersonation, when you presented yourself as Dawn Groff and sent an email to one Gregory Carter, an American citizen through your acclaimed email groffdawn77@gmail.com, that Budweiser Drink is carrying out vehicle advertisement programme, a representation you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 95 of the Penal Code and punishable under Section 324 of the same Penal Code.”

The convict pleaded guilty to the amended charge.

While reviewing the facts of the case, an operative of the EFCC, Olamide Sadiq, told the court that Kayode was arrested in Ilorin.

He said: “My lord, on the 4th of February 2019, based on intelligence reports, operatives of the commission arrested the defendant and others at Agric Estate in Ilorin for their involvement in internet scam. We analysed his phone and laptop and discovered that he created four emails for himself, the email conversations were printed in his presence and discovered that he sent several fraudulent messages to his victims, that was the circumstance in which I knew the defendant my lord.”

Delivering his judgement, Oyinloye said the prosecution had been able to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt.

According to him, the anti-graft body was also able to link the defendant with the allegations of intent fraud brought against him.

He said: “The evidence of the PW1, Olamide Sadiq, who is an operative of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, was not challenged nor controverted.

“This court found you, Abolarin Kayode, guilty of a one-count charge bordering on internet fraud and hereby convicted and sentenced you to six months imprisonment.”

The judge also ordered the convict to forfeit his phones, laptops and a Lexus car to the Federal Government.

The sentence is without an option of fine.

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Metro and Crime

Ebonyi impounds smuggled trailers of rice

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Ebonyi impounds smuggled trailers of rice

Ebonyi State government yesterday said it had confiscated foreign rice loaded in two trailers smuggled into the state.

The administration of Governor Dave Umahi had banned consumption of foreign rice when it came on board and immediately inaugurated a task force to monitor the influx of the commodity in the state.

Yesterday, the task force, known as Neighbourhood Watch, intercepted foreign rice loaded in two trailers smuggled into the state.

The trailers were intercepted by members of Neighbourhood Watch on duty at Afikpo Beach and were taken to the Ministry of Internal Security and Border Peace. Afikpo Beach connects Ebonyi and Cross River as well as Cameroon.

The Commissioner for Internal Security and Border Peace, Stanley Emegha, told journalists that one of the trailers was loaded with rice and empty cartons of beer for easy smuggling of the commodity into the state.

He said: “Some people may not be seeing the security implication of importing rice into the state. The implication is that some people use this avenue to smuggle in arms. If you watch, they go by night and when you search the things in the truck you will discover arms hidden under the bags of foreign rice.

“Hoodlums cannot operate without arms, and they carry more sophisticated weapons compared to what our security men are carrying. Most of these arms are smuggled in through this means.”

Emegha noted that apart from the security threats the importation of foreign rice posed, it also had health implication, as the rice was preserved with chemicals not good for human consumption.

The commissioner explained that Ebonyi State was capable of producing rice that would feed the nation as it was presently ranked third best rice producing state.

He said that four persons were arrested and remanded by the police for rice smuggling.

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Metro and Crime

Gunmen abduct NTA staff in Ogun

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Gunmen abduct NTA staff in Ogun

Gunmen have abducted an employee of the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), Abiodun Adenuga, in Odogbolu Local Government Area of Ogun State.

Adenuga, who works at the Ijebu-Ode station of NTA, was allegedly abducted at his residence at Aiyepe, Odogbolu.

New Telegraph learnt that the incident occurred about 10p.m. on Tuesday.

It was learnt yesterday that the abductors have demanded N15 million for his release.

A dependable source, who confirmed that the abductors had opened negotiations with the victim’s family members, said the gunmen had refused to reduce the ransom.

The source told our correspondent Adenuga usually “goes to work in Ijebu-Ode, which is a distance of about 30 minutes’ drive from Odogbolu”.

The state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), DSP Abimbola Oyeyemi, confirmed that a kidnapping incident actually occurred in the area.

Oyeyemi, however, declared that security operatives were doing everything necessary to ensure that the victim was rescued unhurt and reunited with his family.

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Metro and Crime

Millions of naira property destroyed in Lagos, Ogun fire outbreaks

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Millions of naira property destroyed in Lagos, Ogun fire outbreaks

…lawyer loses certificates

Properties and goods worth millions of Naira were destroyed yesterday when fire gutted houses and shops in both Lagos and Ogun states.

At Tejuosho in Lagos, fire razed a storey building, leaving scores of people injured while the building partially collapsed.

The house is situated behind the popular Tejuosho Market at Yaba.

Although the cause of the fire was still unknown, the officials of the emergency agencies said that incident was caused by power surge from one of the rooms before spreading to other parts of the building.

However, no life was lost, two male adults sustained injuries and were taken to the hospital. The intensity of the inferno also led to cracks of the building and partial collapse of the building.

Officials of the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA, Lagos State Fire  Service  and the Federal Fire Services made frantic efforts to put out the inferno.

Speaking with New Telegraph, the LASEMA Director-General, Dr. Femi Oke-Osanyintolu, said that upon arrival at the scene of the incident, it was discovered that a storey building was gutted by fire as a result of power surge from one of the rooms.

He said: ‘The intensity of the fire has caused physical cracks and collapse of the building. However, no loss of life but two male adult sustained injuries.

“Rescue operation ongoing as the LRT alongside Federal Fire Service and Lagos State Fire Service are on ground to curtail the inferno from further escalation to other buildings.”

Oke-Osanyintolu warned residents to be safety conscious as the dry season was gradually setting in.

Meanwhile, some houses and shops were gutted in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital.

The incident, which occurred about 1a.m., affected 12 rooms and four adjoining shops within the Alase compound at Oke-Itoku area of Abeokuta.

Though there were no fatalities or injuries, goods, documents and other valuables were consumed by the fire.

An Abeokuta-based lawyer, Nurudeen Olaleye, lost his several academic and professional certificates in the inferno.

He said: “The university certificate which I obtained from the University of Ilorin, the Law School certificate and Call to Bar certificate and other certificates of professional courses I have attended were all in one envelope and they were gutted by fire.”

Incidentally, a station of the Ogun State Fire Service is situated a few metres from the scene of the incident.

Our correspondent, however, learnt that the firefighters at the station could not do anything to salvage the situation as they reportedly claimed they had no vehicle nor water to put out the fire.

Narrating his ordeal, Olaleye said the certificates had been kept in one of the affected rooms where his immediate younger brother was living.

He blamed the unavailability of a fire engine at a government designated fire station close to the scene.

When New Telegraph visited the scene, victims of the midnight fire were lamenting their losses.

A shop owner, who identified herself as Mrs. Morufat Tejuosho, stated that she lost goods worth N3.5 million to the incident.

Tejuosho explained that she received a call in the early hours that her shop was on fire.

She lamented that the fire station close to the scene could not come to the aid of the victims as officers in charge said there was no fire engine.

The trader said the people had to contact another fire station at Onikoko area of Abeokuta but all her goods had been consumed by the time firefighters arrived.

Another victim, Sunday Ebenezer, said his musical equipment, two new generators and packets of DVDs estimated at N2.5 million were razed by the fire.

Ebenezer said nobody could ascertain the cause of the fire.

The victims were unanimous in appealing to the state government to come to their aid and assist them with replacing their losses.

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Otabil, Ashimolowo, Bismark, others for 2019 TREM conference

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Pastor Mathew Ashimolowo, Bishop Tudor Bismark, Dr. Mensa Otabil, Bishop Wayne Malcolm and other ministers of God are to minister at the 2019 Kingdom Life World Conference (KLWC), organised by the Redeemed Evangelical Mission (TREM).

The eight-day conference, billed to hold between Sunday, November 17 and 24, will hold at TREM International Headquarters, Obanikoro Anthony-Oke, Gbagada Expressway, Lagos.

This year’s conference, which coincided with the 30th anniversary of Kingdom Life World Conference, is tagged: “Love that Passes Knowledge.”

The conference, according to the organisers, will be heralded by an opening ceremony/act, ministration in songs and word.

Some of the major highlights of the convention include the graduation of the God’s Army Bible College on November 22, and a special praise evening service tagged: “Zamar Concert,” which is expected to hold the same day, featuring various gospel artists.

The Kingdom Life World Conference is the annual conference of the ministry that brings together Christians irrespective of their locations across the world.

The conference, which began in 1990, the organisers said, had continued to attract anointed servants of God across the world, and not only members of the church, but men and women of God from various ministries in Nigeria, other African nations, United States, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Philippines and Germany.

“Every year, we have delegates from various parts of the world, who are not members of this ministry, but who come to receive from God and testimonies from them have been very encouraging,” they added.

Since the maiden edition 30 years ago, in 1990, with the theme: “Walking in Dominion,” other themes of the convention over the years are “Let His Glory Fall (1991), Fully Committed (1992), His Holy Habitation (1993), Pure Fire (1994), Power In The Word (1995), Manifestation Of The Sons Of God (1996-1998), The Glory Is Here (1999), Signs Wonders & Miracles(2000), Releasing The Captives (2001), In His Presence (2002), Our God Reigns (2003), It Is Well (2004), Behold His Wonder (2005), El-Shaddai (2006), And God Said (2007 -2008), Unshakable Kingdom (2009 – 2010), Grace Grace (2011-2012), Open Heaven (2013), God and God Alone (2014), Rest 2015 – 2016, and Unsearchable Riches of Christ in 2017-2018.

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