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Tuesday, June 18, 2024

FCMB ex-manager bags 9yrs jail term for diverting customer’s N112M

By Monsurudeen Olowoopejo

After six years of legal battle, the Anambra State High Court sitting in Onitsha has sentenced a former manager with First City Monument Bank, FCMB, Onitsha branch, Nwachukwu Placidus, to nine years imprisonment for customer’s funds.

Nwachukwu was send to prison after being found guilty of diverting over N112 million fixed deposit funds brought to the branch by a customer for his personal use.

In his judgment yesterday, Justice S. N. Odili held that “the prosecution proved its case beyond reasonable doubt” and sentenced the convict accordingly.

The judge slammed on the financial expert nine years imprisonment on count 3, 4years on count 4 while 9years was for counts 5 to 16 respectively.

Meanwhile, the judge discharged him on counts 1 and 2, and directed that the sentences should run concurrently.

Aside from that, the court ordered the convict should payback the said sum to his victim, Idemili Microfinance Bank.

The former banker’s journey to the Correctional Centre began when a petitioner , Idemili Microfinance Bank, alleged that the sum of N112, 100, 000 was handed over to him as the branch manager of FCMB in Onitsha, for fixed deposit.

However, when the petitioner approached the bank to terminate and withdraw the deposit, the bank denied receiving the said funds.

Upon receipt of the petition, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) swung into action and investigations revealed that the convict diverted the money for his own use and issued a fake fixed Deposit Certificate to the petitioner.

He was arraigned on Tuesday, March 27, 2018 on 16-count charges bordering on forgery, stealing, obtaining by false pretence and uttering, by the Enugu Zonal Command of the EFCC.

One of the counts reads: “Nwachukwu Placidus between February 2009 and November 2014 in Onitsha, Anambra State within the jurisdiction of the Anambra State High Court of Nigeria with intent to defraud obtained the sum of (N112,100,000) One Hundred and Twelve Million, One Hundred Thousand Naira only, from Idemili Microfinance Bank under the false pretence that you have placed the said money in a fixed deposit account with First City Monument Bank PLC for it, which pretence you knew to be false and you thereby committed an offence”.

He pleaded not guilty to the charges when they were read to him, thus setting the stage for his trial.

In the course of trial, the EFCC, through its counsel, Mainforce Adaka Ekwu presented four witnesses and tendered several relevant documents which were admitted in evidence.

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