The Port Harcourt Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission said on Tuesday that it arraigned a suspected internet fraudster, Samuel Akunomah, before a Federal High Court in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.

Akunnomah was arraigned before Justice A.T. Mohammed on August 6, 2021 on 45 counts bordering on internet fraud, impersonation and obtaining money under false pretences to the tune of N425m.

The Head, Media and Publicity of EFCC, Wilson Uwujaren, disclosed this in a statement on Tuesday.

Uwujaren said the suspect was arrested by EFCC operatives on June 28, 2021, at Royal Palm Estate, Peter Odili Road, Port Harcourt following established intelligence linking him with internet fraud and other internet-related activities.

One of the counts read: “That you Samuel Akunomah, Omena Precious Okeren (still at large) and Shittu Adebayo (still at Large) Austin Chibike (still at Large) Charemon Golden (still at Large) sometime in 2020, at Port Harcourt, within the jurisdiction of this honorable court, directly took possession of the sum of N425m in First Monument Bank Account No. 4915799016, in the name of Skillz Nigeria Enterprises; money which to your knowledge formed part of the proceeds of an unlawful act, and thereby committing an offence contrary to Section 15 (1)(2) (d) of the Money Laundering ( Prohibition) Act, 2011 (As Amended ) and punishable under Section 15(3) of the same Act.”

In view of his not guilty plea, the prosecution counsel, S.M.H. Ibekute, prayed the court to remand the defendant pending the commencement of trial.

However, defence counsel, Daninagbo Davies, prayed for for his bail.

Justice Mohammed, however, reserved ruling on the bail application and remanded Akunomah in Port Harcourt Correctional Centre.