Hajj Fare collector arraigned for N2.6m fraud

A hajj fare collector, Mustapha Usman has been arraigned at the Yobe State High Court, Damaturu, on a one-count charge bordering on criminal breach of trust after allegedly misappropriating N2.6 million collected from clients,

He was arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, before Justice Garba Nabaruma.

He was said to have been arrested after the EFCC received a petition written against him alleging that, while he was appointed as the Hajj Fare Collector for Damaturu Local Government Area, Yobe State, he dishonestly misappropriated the sum of N2.6 million.

The said sum was meant for intending pilgrims who paid through him. He is however, being accused of diverting the money to his personal use.

The count reads: “That you, Mustapha B. Usman, sometimes in 2017 at Damaturu, Yobe State within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, in your capacity as the Hajj Fare Collector of Damaturu Local Government Council, Damaturu, Yobe state, while entrusted with properties (monies) of intending pilgrims to the tune of N2,600,505.00 (Two Million Six Hundred Thousand, Five Hundred and Five Naira) dishonestly misappropriated the proprieties (monies) and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under section 315 of the Penal Code Law of Yobe State.”

He pleaded “not guilty” to the charge.

Counsel for the EFCC, Mukhtar Ahmed, prayed the court for a trial date.

Counsel for the defence, A.A Shehu, made an oral application for bail, which was opposed by the prosecution.

Thereafter, Justice Nabaruma adjourned the case to May 27, 2019 for commencement of trial and ordered that he should be remanded in prison.

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