A 21-year-old trader, Chukwuebuka Ezengwu, who allegedly staked N286,600 sent to him by customers into the Mavrodi Mondial Movement (MMM) scheme was arraigned on Thursday in Lagos.
Ezengwu, who appeared before a Tinubu Magistrates’ Court, is facing a two-count charge of fraud and theft.
He, however, denied the charges.
The Prosecutor, Insp. Philip Osijiale, told court that the accused committed the offences on March 1 at about 12:00 p.m. at Obun-Eko on Lagos Island.
He said that the accused put some N286, 600 sent by two of his customers, Chukwumeka Okafor and Paul Ekene to help them buy goods into the Ponzi scheme.
Osijiale explained that Okafor sent N152, 000 while Ekene sent N134, 600 to the accused.
He said that Ezengwu put the money to his personal use and refused to refund the duo, having staked the money into MMM.
The prosecutor said that the offences contravened Sections 287 and 314 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.
Section 287 prescribes three years imprisonment for theft while Section 314 carries 15 years imprisonment for fraud.
The Magistrate, Mr Kazeem Omolaja, granted Ezengwu bail in the sum of 250,000 with two sureties in like sum.
He said that one of the sureties must be either his father or mother while the other must be a gainfully employed person.
Omolaja adjourned the case until May 30 for mention.