By Emmanuel Olorunsola
A 19-year-old Chemistry student of the University of Ilorin, Mr. Ajayi Joshua Oluwatobi, has been sentenced to nine months’ imprisonment for defrauding three students seeking accommodation by Ilorin High Court, Kwara State.
The Ilorin zonal office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) filed the court case against the affected student.
According to the charge sheet presented against the student in court by the EFCC, “That you, Ajayi Joshua Oluwatobiloba, in the month of November 2019 in Ilorin, within the jurisdiction of this court, did cheat by deceiving one Anjorin Oluwabukolami Eniola, a University of Ilorin student, when you fraudulently induced her to pay N45,000 into the GT bank account 045262140 of one Hassan Adefemi Daniel for hostel accommodation, a representation you knew to be false, and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 320 of the Penal Code and punishable under section 322 of the same law.”
Justice Sikiru Oyinloye, who delivered the ruling, also ordered Oluwatobi to pay the sum of N105, 000 fine to serve as deterrent to others.
“The defendant was brought before this court on a three-count charge, which was read to him, and he pleaded guilty, and this court accepted the evidence of the prosecution; the testimonies of the sole prosecution witness; the unchallenged and un-contradicted testimonies,” Sikiru said.
“This court is of the view that the prosecution has proved its case beyond reasonable doubt, therefore, the court hereby finds you, Ajayi Joshua Oluwatobi guilty of count 1, 2 and 3. You are hereby convicted for the offence.”
However, the defence counsel urged the presiding judge to temper justice with mercy and give his client an option of fine rather than custodial sentence.
Responding, the prosecution counsel, Andrew Akoja, said, “My Lord, the issue of sentencing is within the discretion of the court, so I want the court to use its discretion in sentencing the convict.”
After hearing both parties, Justice Oyinloye sentenced Oluwatobi to three months imprisonment on count 1, 2 and 3.
According to him, the sentence is to run concurrently while the convict is to also pay a fine of N105, 000 only.
The convict ran into problem when the University of Ilorin reported his conducts to the EFCC that he defrauded three accommodation seekers.