A popular Lagos-based Bureau De Change (BDC) operator, Atoyebi Lateef Bamidele, a.k.a. Bam-Bam, has been arraigned before a Federal High Court, Lagos, on charges of conspiracy, obtaining by false pretence and stealing of N157 million, belonging to traders in Alaba, Lagos.
Bamidele, who operates under the business name ‘Prosocial International Limited’, was arraigned before the court by the officers of Force Criminal Investigation Department (Force CID) Alagbon, Ikoyi, Lagos.
His arrest and arraignment was sequel to a petition written to the police by the lawyer to some traders, Mr. Henry Mejulu according to the PM Express
Arraigning the BDC operator, the prosecutor, Barrister S. O. Ayodele, told the court that the defendant and others now at large, between December 2022 and January 2023, obtained the total sum of N157,206,000, with false pretence of getting the United States dollars (USD) equivalent.
Precisely, the defendant was said to have collected the money from the traders’ representatives.
The defendant was alleged to have diverted the money and used the money for his personal purposes.
The defendant’s alleged unlawful acts, according to the prosecutor, contravened sections 8(a) and 1(1)(c) of the Advance Fee Fraud and other Related offences Act; CAP A8 Vol 1, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004, and punishable under section 1(3) of the same Act.
The prosecutor also told the court that offence of the stealing against the defendant contravened Section 383 of the Criminal Code Act, Cap C 38, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004, and punishable under section 390 (9) of the same Act.
However, the defendant, denied the allegations and pleaded not guilty to the charges.
In view of the defendant’s not guilty plea, the prosecutor urged the court to remand him till the determination of the charges.
But the lawyer to the defendant, Mr. E. A. Alafin, told the court that he has filed his client’s bail application and same has been served of the prosecution.
He urged the court to admit his client to bail in the most liberal terms.
The application was vehemently opposed on the ground that he need to read through the application and file his response accordingly.
Consequently, Justice Akintayo Aluko, adjourned the matter till October 5, for hearing of the defendant’s bail application.
The judge also ordered that the defendant be remanded in the custody of the Nigerian Correctional Services (NCoS), till the adjourned date.