Ponzi Scheme Operator Docked For Allegedly Defrauding Profs., MTN Staff Cooperative, Army Col, Others Of N1.2B

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gavel courtA Ponzi scheme operator, Michael Ukiye Diongoli, allegedly duped a retired Army Colonel, a Professor and some others of the sum of N1. 286, 580, 656 billion, was today arraigned before Justice Ambrose Lewis-Allagoa of the Federal High Court, Lagos.

Michael Ukiye Diongoli was arraigned by operatives of the Force Criminal Investigation Department (Force CID), Alagbon-Ikoyi, Lagos, on an eight-count charge of Conspiracy, obtaining by false pretence, and fraud.

Ukiye was arraigned on the alleged crimes alongside his two firms, UK-Don Group and UK-Dion Investment Limited.

He was accused of defrauding his victims, under the false pretence of multiple Returns On Investment (ROI) within the period of six months to one year of their investment.

Some of the alleged fraud victims include Dr Basil Onugu, Prof. Onyekachi Green Nwankwo, his wife, Elizabeth U. Onyekachi Green, Nnenna Ikubogh, Securities Ltd, Uchenna Nwankwo, Chinyere Oguejiofor, Sekoni A. Adetokunmo, Catholic Charismatic Renewal, Prof. Iloeje Casimir, Lillian Ofondu, Suliaman Mamman, MTN Employer Cooperative, Gabriel Andrew, Obieme Adaku K., Col. Chukwu Terngu (Rtd) and others.

The Prosecutor, Mrs Ezema Susan, a Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP) while arraigning the defendant today, told the court that the defendants allegedly committed the offences between December 2021and April 2022.

The Prosecutor told the court that the offences contravened Sections 8 (a), 1(1) (a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006 and Punishable under Section 1 (3) of the same Act.

The defendant denied the allegations and pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Following his not guilty plea, his counsel, Mr Olalekan Ojo (SAN) who led other lawyers, informed the court that his client’s bail application has been filed and the same has been served on the prosecutor.

Responding to the bail application, the Prosecutor, Mrs Ezema said that, the defendant’s lawyer has informed her that the bail summons has been served on the Prosecution, but then she is yet to receive it.

She, therefore, pleaded with the court for a short adjournment so that she can get a copy of the bail summons and see if she will be responding to court.

Meanwhile, Justice Lewis-Allagoa, while ordering that the defendant be remanded in the custody of the prosecution,( police)  adjourned till Tuesday, for a hearing of the bail application.

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