By Ugochukwu Alaribe
ABA—Abia State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Chris Ezike, has said that 10 suspected operators of wonder bank, who defrauded over 1,000 people in the state have been arrested by the Police.
Briefing journalists in Aba, Ezike disclosed that he had set up an investigative panel headed by an Assistant Commissioner of Police, to unravel the matter, stressing that the preliminary report from the panel indicated that the number of victims are higher than expected.
He urged the victims to submit their documents to the panel and assured that everyone would be paid.
Ezike warned against extortion of the victims by policemen and urged them to ignore anyone that demands money to help them get their stolen money.
His words: “I am here to aggregate the reports the Police is getting about the large scale fraud that is going on in the state, predominantly in Aba.
“Several organisations have come out masquera-ding as cooperative societies, empowerment units, women groups, church empowerment programmes and they’ve been making people pay huge sums of money with hope that in few weeks, the interest will double.
“We were thinking that about 1,000 persons have been defrauded, but the report I am getting from the panel is even more worrisome and I think the number is a sheer minimum. 10 suspects are in custody.
“From tomorrow(today), we shall be dialoguing with the judiciary to ensure that right things are done.
“I wish to use this opportunity to alert the people of the state, particularly Aba and its environs, to be wary of unauthorised and illegal financial institutions and empowerment units they patronise. This is money doubling and it constitute a crime.”
He listed the crimes already established in the wonder bank case to include forgery, conspiracy, fraud, obtaining under false pretense, illegal operation of financial institutions as well as stealing.