Seven people have been charged to court for offences bordering on violation of SIM registration laws.
This was disclosed in a statement by the spokesperson for the Nigeria Communication Commission (NCC), on Sunday in Abuja.
The statement said the offenders were convicted at the Grade 1 Area Court, Nyanya, Abuja and the Senior Magistrate Court, Kano respectively.
“The seven convicts were all charged and for offences bordering on violation of SIM registration laws in the country on September 4, 2020 and October 24, 2020 respectively,” it said.
According to the statement, the offenders, Bako Joseph Boy, Umar Kabiru Abdullahi, Lawal Sani, Shamsuddin Aliyu, George Eze, Ayuba Ishak, and Kabiru Ali were convicted for various SIM card-related offences.
Specifically, the first convict, Bako Joseph Boy, was charged with the sale of SIM cards outside controlled environment, while the other six were arraigned on the charge of the sale of fraudulently registered SIM cards.
The statement revealed that the offences were contrary to section 517 of the Criminal Code Act; Section 65 (1) of the Nigerian Communications Act 2003 and Section 65 (2) of the NCC Act, 2003 and punishable under the same Act.
It said that suspects, who pleaded guilty to the charge preferred against them, were subsequently convicted as charged.
They were sentenced to two months imprisonment with an option to pay a fine of N15,000 and six months imprisonment or the option of fine in the sum of N20,000.
These arrests followed the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the NCC, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, and the State Security Services.
The MOU is to strengthen inter-agency collaboration towards curbing the criminal act of registering and selling of pre-registered SIM cards in the country.
It warned that the use of pre-registered SIM cards gives cover for unwholesome activities like kidnapping, call masking, threat to lives, bullying, armed robbery, identity theft financial crimes and SIM swap fraud, among others.
Therefore, the commission encourages the public to stop the sale, purchase and use of pre-registered SIM cards as it constitutes a punishable offence under the law.
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