The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Uyo Zonal Office has arraigned a couple identified as Gabriel Ikpenwa, and his wife, Lillian Ikpenwa, before Justice Archibong Archibong of the Akwa Ibom State High Court for fraud.

The couple was arraigned alongside a cooperative society, Easycash Multipurpose, owned by Gabriel, on two counts of conspiracy and obtaining money by false pretense.

It was gathered the couple started their fraudulent journey when one Maria Umana on February 22, 2018, petitioned the EFCC, alleging that in 2013, the couple sweet-talked her into investing N450,000 in their cooperative society, with the promise that she would receive N67,500 on a monthly basis as interest.

Starting that For five years, the defendants neither paid the victim the interest nor returned her capital.

The charges read in part, “That you, Gabriel Chizoba Ikpenwa, Lillian Nkechi Ikpenwa, and Easycash Multipurpose Cooperative Society, sometime in 2013 at Uyo, within the jurisdiction of this honorable court, with intent to defraud, did obtain the sum of N450,000 only from one Maria Ebong Umana, under the pretext that if the said Maria Ebong Umana invested the sum of N450,000, she would gain the interest of N67,000 monthly, the pretense  you knew to be false, thereby committing an offense.”

However, The couple pleaded not guilty to the accusation.

I. Ukoha, The prosecutor, asked for a trial date and urged the court to remand the couple in prison.

Meanwhile, C. I. Udoh, The defense counsel, told the court of a bail application for the second defendant, Lilian, pending before the court.

Though the prosecution opposed the application, Justice Archibong granted her bail in the sum of N1m with one surety in like sum.

The case was moved to December 9 and 10, 2020, for trial.