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EFCC arrests Cleric over alleged $44,000 Scam

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Monday arrested a catholic priest, Rev.Fr. Remigius Onyelu, for allegedly defrauding an Abuja based business woman, Mrs. Ijeoma Ugwah, of $44,000.

Although the details of the arrest were still sketchy, our correspondent learnt that the cleric was whisked away at the Pope John 11 Guest House in Wuse 2, Abuja by 10.00 am.

The priest was said to have conspired with her younger sister, simply identified as Princess Ebere David, to obtain the money from the victim under the guise of helping her to process university education for her daughter in Canada.

The priest was said to have claimed he had been on pastoral assignment in Canada for 15 years.

A source said, “Two years after making the payments, the victim was shocked to discover that she has fallen into the hand of a scammer, who hides under his pastoral duties, to scam unsuspecting parents seeking admission for their children in Canada.”

She was said to have subsequently sent a petition to the EFCC Chairman, Mrs. Farida Waziri, who promptly assigned a team of operatives to put the priest on watch list and “get him arrested any time he returns to Nigeria.”

A source in EFCC told our correspondent that while the priest was being detained for interrogation, the commission's operatives were said to have declared a manhunt for his sister, who had allegedly gone underground.

When contacted on the telephone, EFCC spokesman, Femi Babafemi, confirmed the arrest of the priest but declined further comments.