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Canadian sisters who blackmailed Otedola, jump bail

Canadian sisters who blackmailed Otedola, jump bail
May 19
12:09 2017

A Yaba Chief Magistrates’ Court has issued a warrant of arrest on two Canadian sisters, Kiranjot and Tara Matharoo, for failure to appear in court. The defendants are standing trial in a case that has to do with threat to kidnap, cyber stalking and blackmail. The case involves Nigerian billionaire and oil mogul, Femi Otedola, socialite, Dapo Balogun, and Omoregie Ige.

The court ordered the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Fatai Owoseni, to also arrest two other persons, Alhaji Waheed Shobulo and Ade Oregbensa, who stood as sureties for the sisters after they were granted bail in December 2016.

The Interpol Section of the Nigeria Police Force is already making moves to issue an international warrant of arrest against the suspects.

The sisters, who fled to Canada, immediately after perfecting their bail conditions, were first arrested by police in a five star hotel on Victoria Island, Lagos, on December 9, 2016, after Otedola filed a complaint to the Inspector General of Police (IG), Ibrahim Idris, detailing how the sisters blackmailed him and his daughter, using a gossip website, nijagistlive. com.

The sisters allegedly carried out a series of blackmails with a Nigerian collaborator, identified as Babatunde Oyebade. In his complaint to Idris, Otedola noted that the sisters blackmailed and threatened to kidnap members of his family, including his wife and children.

The ladies also blackmailed Dapo Balogun and Omoregie Ige, through their gossip website and demanded N3.5 million from Ige before pulling down the story.

Immediately he received the letter, Idris directed operatives attached to the Special Intelligence Response Team, IRT, to investigate the matter.

Oyebade was first arrested in Festac Town, Lagos. Oyebade told police how he was contracted through his email to design the website. He insisted that he didn’t know that the website would be used for blackmail. He added that N100,000, for his workmanship, was paid to him through a taxi driver.

IRT trailed the sisters to a hotel on Victoria Island, where they were paying N178,000 per night.

A laptop, containing information indicating that the sisters operate a syndicate which specialised in blackmailing wealthy Nigerians using the internet was recovered.

According to police, the ladies had blackmailed several rich and influential Nigerians, including musicians.

After they were arrested, the Canadians pleaded for clemency and vowed to shut down the website.

They were arraigned on December 23, 2016, before Chief Magistrate A. O. Ojo, of the Yaba Magistrate Court, on a four count charge of blackmail, threat to kidnap and cyber-stalking. A bail of N500,000 and two sureties were granted to them. The case was adjourned. Their travelling passports were surrendered to the police.

The sisters, however, obtained temporary travelling documents from the Canadian Embassy in Lagos and travelled back to their country.

They failed to appear in court on their next adjourned date, prompting the magistrate to issue a bench warrant against them and their sureties.

The police have moved the case to the Federal High Court Lagos for trial, and it has been assigned to Justice Olatorungun.

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