Osun NSCDC arrests three-member phone theft, fraud syndicate

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Operatives of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, Osun State Command have arrested a syndicate specialised in mobile phone theft and defrauding unsuspecting members of the public.

The suspects who were arrested at different locations in Osogbo, the Osun State capital, are 35-year-old Kayode Owoseni, a two-time ex-convict, resident of Agbode Street, Oke Baale, Osogbo; 43-year-old Olasunkanmi Adesina, resident of Oke-Ayepe, a suspected cultist and 32-year-old Kehinde Bankole, resident of Idi-Omo, Sabo Road, Osogbo, Osun State.

The Osun NSCDC, Michael Adaralewa while speaking with journalists on Sunday revealed that the arrest followed a complaint from one of their victims, whose phone was stolen.

Commandant Adaralewa said, “The complainant made it known that on the 14th day of June 2024, two men came to buy sachet water in her shop at Inisa, Osun State. While attending to the men, she kept her phone on one of the tables in the shop. The duo later said they were not buying again and promised to come back. It was after they left the shop that the victim realised she could not find her phone again.

“Upon her complaint, the command swung into action and members of the syndicate were arrested on 1st July, 2024.”

He also said, “Diligent investigation revealed that one of the suspects, Kayode Owoseni, had been convicted twice for a similar offence.

Commandant Michael Adaralewa said it was a case of stealing, impersonation, fraud and conspiracy to defraud unsuspecting members of the public.

While assuring that the suspects would be made to face the full wrath of the law, Adaralewa warned criminally minded people in the state to desist from their activities or face the consequences of their actions.

While making his confessional statement, Kayode said he learnt the act of pickpocketing from his friends and their base is at Oja-Oba, Osogbo.

In his statement, one of the syndicate members, Adeshina Olasunkanmi said he belongs to a cult group known as ‘Eta Fraternity’.

He confessed that the stolen phones had been sold, but before then he used the phone’s Subscriber Identification Module (SIM) card to call unsuspecting members of the public, pretending to be an old man who mistakenly dialled phone numbers.

He revealed that in the course of the conversation, he would tell the receiver of the call that he was an herbalist and would want to offer assistance with money rituals.

Members of the public who fell for the trap had sent money to him for sacrifice and he later destroyed the SIM cards, to obliterate evidence.

The suspect further revealed that he worked in collaboration with a man he referred to as ‘JEEGUN’, and both of them have been defrauding members of the public of their hard-earned money for fifteen years.

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