Man held for alleged $50,000 theft

By Jude Isiguzo
In Nigeria
Mar 9th, 2014
0 Comments
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Operatives of the Special Fraud Unit (SFU), Ikoyi, Lagos have arrested an employee of a Bureau de Change and his wife for allegedly stealing  $50,000 from his employer.

The suspect, Festus Chukwuemeka, was arrested following a petition dated January 27, ehich was addressed to the Commissioner of Police, SFU, alleging that he was sent to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) with three other employees by the complainant to collect $50,000 each for foreign exchange business.

It was alleged that Festus made away with the whole money and could not be reached.

The suspect, it was learnt, changed his phone numbers and was only in contact with his wife, Blessing, and his girlfriend, Susan Ehwefan.

The police, in collaboration with a communication company, succeeded in tracking him down at his hide-out in Republic of Benin.

Police said 32-year-old Festus, who hails from Umuoma Okpofe in Ezinihite Mbaise, Imo State, is a Mechanical Engineering graduate of Abia State University.

In his statement, Festus said he was employed as a driver to the petitioner and was sent with the others to collect $50,000 from CBN, adding that after collecting the money, he fled to Cotonou and switched off all his phones.

Spokesperson of the SFU, Ngozi Isintume-Agu, a Deputy Superintendent (DSP), said the suspect, who is married with four children, alerted his wife, Blessing, to run away with the children.

“He was arrested in Benin Republic with the assistance of Benin Republic police authorities while he was trying to purchase a Hiace bus,” she said.

Isintume-Agu said the suspect confessed to the alleged crime, and that he kept $17,000 with his wife at a village near Idiroko.

“His wife, Blessing Chukwuemeka, a 26-year-old petty trader with no formal education, was also arrested. She is a native of Ehime Mbano in Imo State. She admitted that the husband called her on January 21 and told her to run away from home to avoid police arrest because he had stolen a huge sum of money from his employer.

“She further admitted that the money was kept in her custody and that her husband came from time to time to collect it from her.  She was arrested at Idiroko in a friend’s house, where she was hiding.  The sum of $15,000, $2,620,000.00 Cefa and N76,500.00 was recovered from her”, Isintume-Agu said.

She said after ongoing investigations, the suspect and his wife would be charged to court to serve as a deterrent to others.

The Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP), SFU, Zubairu Muazu, also urged the public to be careful of the kind of domestic servants they employ to take care of their homes.

“Employers must not expose domestic servants to valuables that will tempt them to misbehave,” he said.

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