The Nigerian government has extradited a suspect, Adedunmola Gbadegesin, to the United States to face fraud charges involving $148,000.
The spokesperson for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Wilson Uwujaren, who announced this in a statement on Wednesday, said they extradited the suspect on Tuesday.
This followed a February 11, 2022 decision of the Federal High Court in Lagos granting the request by the Attorney-General of the Federation’s office for Mr Gbadegesin’s extradition to the U.S.
“His extradition was coordinated by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, following a request from the office of the Attorney General of the Federation, pursuant to a February 11, 2022 order by Justice D.E Osiagor of the Federal High Court, Lagos, in Suit No. FHC/L/CS/765/21, which granted a request to extradite the suspect to the United States to answer to criminal charges bordering on romance scam, wire fraud and money laundering,” the EFCC said in its statement on Wednesday.
The commission said Mr Gbadegesin, who was arrested on September 2, 2021, allegedly defrauded an American lady living in Kentucky, United States, of over $148,000.
“Upon arriving in the United States, the suspect is billed to appear before a United States District Court for the District of New Mexico, where two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering have been filed against him,” the statement added.
A lawyer from the Federal Ministry of Justice, Pius Akutah, filed the extradition suit marked FHC/L/CS/765/2021 on behalf of the AGF based on the Extradition Act, 2004.
He told the court that a two-count charge of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering was pending against the suspect in the U.S., The Nation had reported.
Each of the alleged offences, according to the lawyer, violates Title 18, United States Code, Sections 1343 and 1349, with the maximum penalty of 20 years in prison
The judge, Daniel Osiagor, after granted the application after hearing Mr Akutah and the counter-argument from Mr Gbadegesin’s legal team.
“Original request order of Magistrate Court from the United States of America, original request letter duly signed by the Interpol and the Attorney-General of Nigeria application to release the defendant are all attached.
“I am satisfied that the applicant has been able to establish a prima facie case against the respondents which warrant the prayers sought in motion papers to be considered.
“Consequently, I hereby order that the respondent be remanded in the Interpol custody pending the approval of the Attorney-General of the Federation for his extradition to the United States of America,” the court had ruled.
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