Former Airtel Staff Bags 5 Years Imprisonment Over Fraud

A customer care representative of Airtel Nigeria Limited, Jeremiah Mustapha, was on Tuesday sentenced to five years’ imprisonment by the Lagos State Magistrates’ Court in Igbosere for facilitating a N2.2m fraud.

Mustapha was arraigned on June 14, 2017, alongside one Nurudeen Salimu on nine counts bordering on conspiracy, stealing, fraud and diverting messages from a phone number to another.

It was gathered that the duo and others at large committed the offences on October 10, 2016, while Mustapha used his position as Airtel customer care representative to divert all the SMS and calls from an Airtel number 08023843032 belonging to one Kazeem Dele to another number.

Mustapha, according to the prosecutor, Cyriacus Osuji, unlawfully disconnected all network services linked to the number without the consent of the owner.

“The number swap aided the second defendant to steal the sum of N2.2m from the Skye Bank account of the complainant. The second defendant forged the signature of the complainant, falsely represented himself as the owner of the account, and withdrew the said sum from the account,” Osuji stated.

The offences were said to be contrary to and punishable under sections 287, 333(1), 340, 334, 365(1), 337, 380, 411and 415 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.

During the trial, Salimu became mentally incapacitated and could not continue with the trial.

Delivering judgment on Tuesday, Magistrate A. G. Omoyele convicted Mustapha on five out of the nine counts and sentenced him to one year imprisonment on each count without an option of fine.

She further ordered that the jail terms would run concurrently.

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