Nigerians convicted of ATM fraud
By Express News Service - BALASORE
20th November 2012 12:28 PM
A local court of Balasore on Monday sentenced eight persons, including four foreign nationals, to undergo rigorous imprisonment (RI) in connection with a multi-crore ATM fraud case.
Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) Debjani Das convicted four Nigerians - Niki Douglas, Willam Joseph, Hennery Omeki and Albert Ohem besides four locals - Jagannath Tripathy, Rabinarayan Mohanty, Kartik Mohanty of Balasore and Pradip Nayak of Nayagragh district of siphoning over Rs 2 crore.
The court on Friday had held them guilty in the ATM fraud case that was registered in 2010.
While Mike Douglas and Willam Joseph have been awarded five-year RI, Hennery Omeki and Albert Ohem sentenced to undergo four-year RI. The rest four have been asked to undergo five-year RI.
According to the prosecution, they all were involved in an e-lottery scam of nearly Rs 2.37 crore.
The scam was unearthed after SN Mohapatra, the territorial manager of Cash Management Services (CMS) lodged a complaint with Sahadevkhunta police seeking action against four of his employees who had misappropriated nearly Rs 2,37,69,000 which was to be loaded in 18 ATM counters of HDFC, Axis, ICICI and Punjab National Bank in Balasore town and Remuna Golai.
CMS is an agency engaged in security of ATMs. The four Indians convicted were the staff members of the CMS and instead of loading the money in the ATMs, had taken away the amount and subsequently deposited the same with a fake e-lottery account opened by the Nigerians. The matter came to light after a month when the CMS authorities cross-checked the transactions. Mohapatra had lodged an FIR on January 1, 2010.
A case was then registered under several sections of IPC for the fraud and IT sections against the staff and the Nigerians were booked under the Foreign National Act besides other sections of the IPC. Three of them were arrested by Balasore police while Nikki was brought from Tihar jail. The police had seized a laptop, 10 cellphones, a chemical bottle, chemical powders and two boxes of black papers.
The Nigerians had claimed they used the black paper to convert pound to dollar. Altogether 48 accounts across the country in which the amount was transferred also were frozen.
Assistant public prosecutor (APP) Amulya Das said the four Indians were tried under Sections 468, 471, 408 and 420 of IPC while the foreign nationals were convicted under Sections 420/109 of IPC, 66 (A) IT Act and 14 (B) Foreign Nationals Act.
The fraud was a part of the Nigerian ‘black dollar magic’ and a multi-crore email lottery scam perpetrated by a gang of Nigerians across Odisha, Maharashtra and West Bengal.
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