The Ogun State Police Command has arrested a 37-year-old Beninoise, Gbese Peter, for allegedly defrauding a Nigerian couple, identified as Mr and Mrs Bamigboye of N5m.
Peter allegedly swindled the couple on the pretext of helping them to overcome their spiritual problem and shielding their children from untimely death.
The state Police Public Relations Officer, Abimbola Oyeyemi, confirmed the incident in a statement on Monday.
Oyeyemi said the suspect was arrested after Mrs Bamigboye lodged a complaint at the Sabo Police Station, Abeokuta North LGA.
He said the complainant lamented that she and her husband met the suspect about five years ago.
The PPRO, in the statement, quoted Mrs Bamigboye to have said that the suspect started discussing with them about a serious spiritual calamity awaiting them and their children “if an urgent spiritual step is not taken.”
“Out of fear of the unknown, they agreed to embark on the said spiritual journey and he took them to the Republic of Benin, where he gave them a wooden coffin which he instructed them not to open until he asked them to do so.
“She stated further that the suspect started collecting money from them until they coughed out a total sum of N5m.
“When they realised that they had been swindled, the shock led to the death of her husband.
“Upon the report, the DPO of Sabo division, SP Nicholas Tamunoinom, detailed his detectives to go after the suspect and with the help of members of the public, they succeeded in arresting him on July 25, 2020.
“On interrogation, the suspect confessed to collecting money under false pretences from the couple, but he claimed that he only duped them of N3.5m and not N5m as claimed by the woman, and that he used the money to build a house for himself.”
Oyeyemi added that the command recovered from the suspect some items, including a wooden coffin containing a white cloth and other substances and a horn wrapped with a white cloth and beads.
The PPRO said the state Commissioner of Police, Edward Ajogun, had ordered the transfer of the suspect to the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department for proper investigation and prosecution.