A 30 -year – old businessman, Obinna Otigba, who allegedly stole his neighbour’s two Automatic Teller Machine (ATM) cards and withdrew N2 million from her accounts, on Thursday appeared before an Ikeja Magistrates’ Court.
The accused was arraigned before Magistrate O.J. Awope on a two-count charge of stealing and illegal conversion of property for personal use. Otigba, who resides at Ojokoro area of Lagos, however, pleaded not guilty and was admitted to N500,000 bail with two sureties in like sum.
Awope said that the sureties should be gainfully employed and show evidence of two years’ tax payment to the Lagos State Government.
The prosecutor, ASP Ezekiel Ayorinde, said that the accused committed the offences from Nov. 17, 2017, to Nov. 28, 2017, at his residence.
He said that the accused stole the ATM cards from Mrs Theresa Ajibade and absconded to an unknown destination.
“The accused who lived in the same house with the complainant stole her ATM cards and took to his heels,” the prosecutor submitted.
Ayorinde said that the accused withdrew the N2 million from Ajibade ’s two bank accounts.
“The accused withdrew N2 million from the complainant’s pension account and investment account, thereby emptying the accounts,” he said.
The prosecutor said one of the cards was recovered from the accused while he claimed to have misplaced the other.
He submitted that the offences contravened Sections 280 and 287 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015 (revised).
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Section 287 stipulates three years’ imprisonment for stealing.
The case was adjourned until March 26 for mention.
The police advised the general public especially bank customers not to trust any unknown person offering assistance at ATM points. The police maintained that if customers find themselves in a situation whereby they need assistance while operating the machine, it is better they call the attention of any staff member of the bank or better still come to the point with a trusted family member or friend.