A secretary at Federal Neuropsychiatric Hospital, Enugu, Mrs Stella Acharra has been sentenced to seven years imprisonment for defrauding 13 job seekers of N14m by an Enugu State High Court.
Addressing the court, Police prosecutor, Mr Damian Njoku-Umeh said the secretary who was first arraigned in 2017 for obtaining money under false pretences, an offence punishable under Section 1 (3) of the Advance Fee Fraud and other related Offences Act, 2006;
“In or about 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 at the Neuropsychiatric Hospital, Enugu, in the Enugu Judicial Division did by false pretences and with intent to defraud, obtain from one Nwatarah Hope, Stella Egotanwa, Ogbe Onyinye, Nwufo Ifeoma, Aforka Clementina, Ikemefuna Ebonyi, Stella Onyeji, Mbah Ifeoma, Okoh Perpetua, Uche Onyia, Egbo Nonye, Igbokwe Patricia and Nwaizugbe Chioma, the total sum of N14m, by falsely pretending that you have the power to procure employment for them and that you would employ them as staff of the Federal Neuropsychiatric Hospital, New Haven, Enugu, which presentation you knew to be false.”
Justice Ajah who delivered judgement on the case on Wednesday March 2, found the defendant guilty of defrauding the job seekers while serving as the personal secretary to the former Medical Director of the hospital, Dr Jojo Onwukwe.
The court also said it was convinced that Stella Acharra scammed the complainants under the guise that she would help them get employment in the hospital following testimonies from five prosecution witnesses, including a police officer, who was part of the team that searched the convict’s house and one Mrs Stella Egotanwa, a personal assistant to the convict.
Acharra was sentenced to seven years’ imprisonment without an option of a fine. Justice Ajah also ordered the convict to pay back the money she got from the complainants.