The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arrested Emmanuel Oluwaniyi, controller of Kirikiri Maximum Prison for his role in allowing Hope Aroke, a convicted internet fraudster, to receive treatment outside the prison, where he is serving a 24-year jail term.
According to the commission, Aroke, also known as “H.Money”, had masterminded a mega scam to the tune of over $1 million from prison, using a network of accomplices. He said preliminary investigation revealed that the convict had access to the internet and mobile phone in detention.
Also arrested was Hemeson Edwin, head of the medical center at Kirikiri Prison, who allegedly gave exaggerated medical report that warranted the referral for Aroke to be treated outside the facility.
In a statement, Wilson Uwujaren, spokesman of the anti-graft agency, said the duo were arrested on Monday. “The suspects have given useful information to the Commission about their alleged involvement in the crime,” Uwujaren said.
“Aroke was one of the two Malaysia-based Nigerian undergraduate fraudsters arrested by the EFCC towards the end of 2012 at the 1004 Housing Estate, Victoria Island, Lagos, following a tip-off.”
Uwujaren said Aroke, who hails from Okene In Kogi state, had claimed to be a student of computer science at the Kuala Lumpur Metropolitan University, Malaysia. He said the agency later discovered the Aroke as the “arrow head of an intricate web of an internet fraud scheme that traverses two continents”.
“When Aroke was arrested, a search conducted by EFCC operatives on his apartment led to the recovery of several items such as laptops, iPad, traveling documents, cheque books, flash drives, internet modem, and three exotic cars – a Mercedes Benz Jeep, One 4Matic Mercedes Benz Car and a Range Rover Sport SUV,” Uwujaren said.
“He was eventually convicted by Justice Lateefa Okunnu of the Lagos State High Court, Ikeja on two counts of obtaining money by false pretence, cheque cloning, wire transfer and forgery.
“He was sentenced to 12 years imprisonment on each of the two.”