Four staff of Mainstreet Bank, Obong Francis Ime, Harrison Wisdom, Oche Garuba, and Nnamdi Onyeka Igboamalu have been arraigned on a charge of theft by the Economic and Financial Crime Commission, EFCC at Lagos High Court.

The four staff of the bank that were brought closer together by Presidential Implementation Committee on Federal Government Properties? money domiciled in Mainstreet Bank Area 7 in Abuja Branch, and that of Power Holding Corporation of Nigeria, PHCN in the same location plundered a total of N129m from the two bodies? bank accounts. They perpetrated the fraud by opening several bank accounts in their names, close associates, and also used pseudo names where the monies were transferred to.

And just like the funds transfer, the withdrawal was also done piecemeal, and within two days. At a time, they stealthily transferred N10m from PHCN?s account in the bank to one John Udoka?s Zenith Bank account. At another time, one of them, Obong Francis Imeh was the beneficiary of another N10m transferred to his account in Zenith Bank. Other beneficiaries either real or imagined were Abimbola Abdulkareem, Michael Bedford, Okubo Funrou, Yusuf Adamu, Gordian Daniel, Oyenka Jude, Braimoh Aliyu and Allagoa Tony Kumoemi.

However, the perpetrators of the N129m fraud were not lucky in some of their transactions. A total of N114m, which they made attempts to steal at various times fell through. In a petition to EFCC signed by the Head, Investigation Unit of Mainstreet Bank, Mr. Femi Onile, and the Acting Chief Inspector, Mr. Yemi Morebise, the bank intimated the commission about the criminal act, and called on it to prosecute the suspects and their accomplices.

The petition reads; ?We wish to bring to your attention a case of fraudulent interbank funds transfer made on 6th August 2012 and 7th August 2012, involving fourteen (14) funds transfer totaling N129m, fraudulently transferred from our customers? accounts in Area 7 branch, Abuja to some accounts in Zenith Bank Plc and First City Monument Bank Plc??

The bank also told the anti-graft body that it was Zenith Bank that apprehended one of the perpetrators, Obong Francis Ime when he came to make another withdrawal in the bank.

It would be recalled that on December 29, 2011, an allegation of fraud was made against Mainstreet Bank?s management. It was said that on that day, N160m was withdrawn from the bank by its management without the knowledge of the board and some of the executive directors.

Source: Orijoreporters.com

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