Man arraigned for $12,000 romance scam in Port Harcourt


One Aretuemhen Frank has been arraigned before Justice M. L Abubakar of the Federal High Court, sitting in Port Harcourt, on a four-count charge bordering on false pretences, impersonation, possession of scam documents and obtaining money by false pretence.

The crimes run contrary to Section 6 of the Advance Fee Fraud and other Related Offences Act 2006 and punishable under Section 1(3) of the same Act.

Frank was docked for allegedly defrauding an American lady, Thorman Benson the sum of $12000 in a series of online dating deals.

One of the count charges read: “That you Aretuemhen Frank, on or about December 2018, in Port Harcourt, Rivers State within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court fraudulently impersonated one Max Allen, a United States of America soldier, with intent to gain advantage for yourself and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 22
(3) (a) of the Cybercrimes (Prohibition, Prevention, etc) Act, 2015 and punishable under Section 22 (4) of the same Act.”

The defendant pleaded not guilty to the four-count charge preferred against him while his defence counsel, P.O Nworah, informed the court of an application for bail for his client.

Justice Abubakar granted the applicant bail in the sum of N1million and one surety in like sum.

He said the surety must be a civil servant residing within the jurisdiction of the court. The judge also remanded him in EFCC custody pending the time he meets his bail condition. He adjourned the matter to July 3, 2019, for trial.