• CP urges Lagosians to get receipt, desist from buying fairly used devices unsure of
Two suspected online scammers notorious for advertising pricey mobile phones at cheaper prices on jiji.com and luring buyers to locations to defraud and dispossess them of their money in exchange for fake phones are currently in police custody.
The suspects, Chukwuemeka Ogbonna, 45; and Olabode Kehinde (34); before their arrest were phone technicians at the Computer Village, Ikeja.
They were arrested at Olowu Street, Ikeja in separate incidents on Wednesday September 9.
The duo, who are members of same syndicate, would advertise Iphone X originally valued at N240,000 for N155,000 to lure buyers into their den.
According to the police, the suspects alongside other gang members lured buyers to locations around Olowu Street and Computer Village in Ikeja, where they fraudulently collected money from them after showing them the real phones but switched it to substandard ones.
The suspects would thereafter flee the scene, leaving their victims stranded and confused.
In their confessions, Ogbonna and Kehinde revealed that besides advertising on jiji.com they sold fake mobile phones on the streets of Computer Village to unsuspecting buyers as well as return fake or paper money to their victims after collecting the real money from them.
In the words of Ogbona, the kingpin of the gang is one Ibrahim. “He advertised on jiji.com and supplied us with the real Iphone X and the fake Iphone X. The real Iphone X is N240,000 while the fake is an android phone made to look like an Iphone X. It is N30,000”.
He said the Iphone X was advertised for N155,000. Buyers negotiated N120,000. “Knowing what I want to sell to him, I encouraged him to meet me at Olowu after changing meeting locations twice to ensure that we were not being baited by the police”.
He narrated, “I showed him the real Iphone X for him to confirm it while the fake was in my back pocket. I took the real one back from him again for us to settle our bargain. Meanwhile, I had arranged with other gang members to come around and distract the attention of the buyer so as to create room for me to swap the real Iphone X with the fake version.”
Ogbonna’s plot was mission accomplished. He sold the fake Iphone X and together with his gang members, they shared the victim’s N120,000.
This time, however, he got caught in police net. “Unknown to me, the police baited and arrested me the third day after the fraud.”
Part of Ogbonna’s alibi for fraud is that times are hard, adding, “I stopped doing it before. I need money to feed my family. That is why I came back into it”.
He revealed, “We are many doing it. We call it street hustling. I wont go back to it if released.”
Meanwhile, the second suspect, Kehinde was arrested by the Decoy Team of RRS for collecting N100,000 and Iphone 6S from one Obinna, whom he lured to same Computer Village after agreeing to swap them for an Iphone X but swindled the victim.
Kehinde confessed to be a member of the same syndicate. He confirmed Ogbonna’s claim that the syndicate comprised other members on the streets of Computer Village.
Following their confessions, the Commissioner of Police, Hakeem Odumosu implored Lagosians to be wary of suspected swindlers parading themselves as phone dealers with a view to exploiting them of their hard earned money.
“Ensure you obtain receipt with traceable addresses for mobile devices you are buying,” he added.
Odumosu further warned Lagosians to stop buying fairly used phones whose sources they don’t know.Follow us on social media