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End of the road for fake naira notes swindlers

•As police arrest two suspects

By Ifeanyi Okolie

A 40-year-old man, Afeez Abiola is currently telling detectives at the Agege Police Division his escapades in fake currency dealings in Lagos, as he was recently arrested  with over N70,000 in two hundred naira denomination fake notes while attempting to  purchase a motorcycle at Agege Market.

His arrest brought succour to traders at the market as some who were victims of fake currency transactions could not hold their joy as they reportedly celebrated the arrest of Abiola and his accomplice, Ahmed Olayiwola (28), a motorcyclist.

Lagos Comissioner of Police, Akpoyibo

Abiola, a tailor at the popular Oluwola market located at the Lagos Island, during an interaction with Crime Alert, narrated how he ventured into fake currency business.    According to him,  he wasn’t making enough money  from  his tailoring business to cater for his needs and that of his family.

“ I am a father of  two and a tailor.  I am paid  based on the number of cloths I  sew.   And  I get as low as N300  for a trouser  and N200 for shirt, but I am not  the only one in the shop, we are many.. At one time,  jobs stopped coming and  I was unable to fend for myself and family.    One day, there is this man we  used to call Alloy,  he is into visa  racketeering around that Oluwole axis. He came to our shop with a torn trouser and he pleaded he did not have money and I should amend it for him, which I did because I knew him.

While  I was amending the trousers,  I told him of my plight and he offered to help me. First, he told me how he could sell fake currency to me at very  cheap prizes. When I accepted, he cautioned that I should disposed them quickly and also adviced that I should spend them on either recharge cards or on motorcycle.  I made over  N100,000 before I was arrested.

“I  bought seventy thousand naira fake naira notes with just ten thousand naira original notes and  spent them on recharge cards. The second time, I used N5000 to buy N50, 000 fake notes. I added genuine N30, 000 to the fake notes and I bought a motorcycle (Okada) at Abeokuta, but I resold it here in Lagos for N93, 000.  I also bought another motorcycle at Ajah with fake N60, 000.  The last one was this Bajaj motorcycle   which I have already paid with N70, 000 fake notes before luck ran out on me”.

On how  he was arrested, Abiola said  “ when I gave the money to the sale’s girl,  she took it inside  to count it.   I and Olayiwola, were waiting out side for her to get the  receipt before  we saw the police. I don’t know if she alerted the police when she discovered they were fake but the police came,    arrested me  and some traders came out and gathered around us, some said we should be set ablaze because they were victims of fake currency notes  but the police refused and took us away.   I have told the police all I know about it and every thing I have bought with the money.”

The Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer Frank  Mba,  who confirmed  the report spoke on the method used by the criminals in deceiving unsuspecting businessmen, “Their modus-operandi is to go to business centres during the weekend, and during rush hours. They know that during the weekend, the business owners who can easily detect the fake currency will not be around, so they target the sales boys and girls.

They usually do not spend only the fake notes as they would have added a few genuine notes to the fake ones so that people will not detect the fake ones easily. Business owners should therefore educate their sales persons to be extra cautious especially during the weekend. Our operatives have been ordered to investigate and arrest any person dealing in fake notes at the market. The case is under investigation and the suspects will be charged to court soon” he said.


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