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Father, son docked for alleged N7m visa fraud

 A father and son, Theophilus and Dennis Phillips who allegedly defrauded 39 people of N7 million, on Wednesday, appeared in an Ebute Meta Chief Magistrates’ Court in Lagos.

Theophilus, 54, was brought before the court on a six-count charge bordering on conspiracy, fraud, obtaining under false pretences, forgery and stealing while Dennis, 29, appeared on a charge of conspiracy. They, however, pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Earlier, the Prosecutor, S.A. Adebesin told the court that the accused committed the offences sometime in July 2018, at Ikorodu.

He said that the accused had defrauded 39 persons namely: Dosunmu Rasaq, Jacob Bamiteko, Olaolu Ariyo, Oliremi Ogunsola, Busuyi Komolafe, Akinola Awodeji, Kola Adumadeyin and Abiodun Danyiwo.

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Also affected are: Ayinde Elegbede, Abeke Tiamiyu, Olugbemi Williams, Asta Hamman, Jolaade Akintobi, Hezekiah Babatunde, Ramota Badejo, Ekundayo Oke, Ishola Jimoh, Amope Ajayi, Oladoye Ariyo and Ouwayemi Ashogbon.

Oluwaseun Oke, Temitope Badejo, Adeshina Muritala, Ayinde Odunsi, Joseph Ogunsade, Saka Adelaja, Ngozi Ezike, Collins Authur, Destiny Author, Toden Jakpa, Adebola Dosunmu, Funmilayo Olakunle, Oladimeji Olunyo are also victims.

Others are; Olatunji Ogunba, Gbolahan Essa, Samuel Akintoye, Kayode Jejeloye, Adenike Adewodu, Abraham Omotosho and Segun Elegbede.

The Phillips had obtained the sum of N4.6 million from the complainants under the pretext that they would obtain American visas for them.

Adebesin also alleged that the two accused had forged the signature of Mr Munni Irone, President of Arts for Peace Awards so that it could be acted upon as genuine, and were also found in possession of seven Nigerian passports.

The offences contravened Sections 287, 314, 329, 365 and 411 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.

The Chief Magistrate, Mr O.O. Olatunji admitted Theophilus to bail in the sum of N2 million with two responsible sureties each in like sum.

Dennis, his son, was granted bail in the sum of N500, 000 with two responsible sureties each in like sum.

Olatunji ordered the remand of the accused at the Ikoyi Prison pending the perfection of their bail and adjourned until Feb. 26 for mention. (NAN)