N1.45 million fraud: Ex-presidential aspirant, Osita Okereke, to remain in prison

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Tuesday said that Osita Okereke, an alleged fraudster who posed as a National Task Force Coordinator, would remain in Kuje prison till December 10, pending ruling on the bail application filed by his counsel.
Mr. Okereke, a former presidential aspirant under the platform of the Nigeria Liberation Party, is facing a six-count charge of impersonation, forgery and obtaining N1.45 million under false pretense – at the Abuja High Court, Apo. He was arraigned on November 21 alongside Ishmael Nwogu.
Mr. Okereke and his co-accused were alleged to have portrayed themselves as members of a National Task Force set up to combat importation and smuggling of small arms, ammunition and light weapons.
According to the EFCC, the fake task force operated from several offices in different parts of the country, from where they defrauded unsuspecting members of the public by deceitfully selling recruitment forms to them at the cost of N5,000 each – under the pretext of offering them employment with the Federal Government.
The monies were paid into a First Bank account, numbered: 3066173170.
The agency accused Messrs Okereke and Nwogu of forging documents titled, Restricted, Federal Government of Nigeria, National Task Force, and holding the offices of Director-General and Director – respectively – of the Federal Capital Territory Command of the National Task Force.
The agency had earlier said that the group’s activities were uncovered through intelligence reports, after weeks of painstaking surveillance, which led to the agency storming the task force’s office at the Federal Secretariat Complex, Enugu.
The syndicate’s zonal co-coordinator, Obinna Onyekwelu, was arrested there along with nine others.
The EFCC spokesperson, Wilson Uwujaren, in a statement, said the counsel to the defence, Kanayo Okafor, had urged the court to grant his client bail, claiming that the offence committed was ‘bailable’ and that the accused persons would be available to face trial.
The presiding judge, J. Y. Tukur, however, ruled that the accused persons be returned to Kuje prison.

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