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Nigerian using false names to make purchase at Rushmere ‘facing deportation’

Police found five bank cards with two different names neither of which was the defendant

A Nigerian man has been sentenced to four months in prison for fraud and is likely to face deportation according to his legal representative.

The 50-year-old’s barrister told court deportation was inevitable and said the defendant did not wish for a pre-sentence report.

Johnson Babatunde Akilo, with an address in London, pleaded guilty to four counts of fraud by false representation, possession of articles in connection with fraud and obstructing police.

Craigavon Magistrates’ Court heard on Friday that on August 17 police responded to reports of a man using false names to make a purchase at Currys at Rushmere.

Staff stated Akilo used a number of bank debit cards which were declined to try and take out a contract on a phone.

Court heard the defendant had successfully made transactions at the EE store at Rushmere along with Carphone Warehouse outlets in Sprucefield and Bangor.

Police located Akilo outside the Argos store at Rushmere, where he gave his name as Frank Nkala.

During a search of the defendant’s person and vehicle officers located five bank cards with two different names neither of which were Akilo’s real name.

Also found were three mobile phones and a letter addressed to another individual.

The defendant was taken to Lurgan Police station where he delivered a no comment interview.

Prosecution stated that two mobile phones that Akilo purchased had not been located by police and retailed at £1,000 each, but at the time had been on offer at just below £600 each.

Defence barrister Conor Lunny informed the court that the defendant was originally from Nigeria but had been “coming and going between this jurisdiction and the UK for the last 20 years”.

He added: “His record does him no favours, although not identical, the offences are very, very similar”.

Mr Lunny commented that Akilo did not wish for a pre-sentence report as there was an “air of inevitability” as he conceded his client would likely be deported.

Deputy District Judge Laura Ievers stated: “The dates of these offences are different, and you could have been dealt with separately but I am going to sentence them in their totality.”

She added: “You are very lucky as you all too easily could have been facing Crown Court proceedings.”

Akilo was sentenced to four months in prison for all the offences.

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