Trafficking: How 100 unemployed youths were swindled N65m over phoney jobs

Unemployed youths, numbering over 100 in Ondo State, have been swindled to the tune of over N65 million under the pretext of offering them phoney jobs abroad by human traffickers.

However, two of the gang leaders, Pitti Omolade and Ogunbayo Ayorinde, were apprehended by the personnel of the state security outfit, codenamed Amotekun and have made confessional statements.

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Most of the victims were unemployed graduates desirous of job opportunities abroad.

Vanguard gathered that the unsuspecting youths were tricked using a post on the internet informing interested unemployed Nigerians of a job in neighbouring countries.

They were trafficked to Cotonou in Benin Republic and abandoned after parting with N650,000 each.

How victims were swindled — Amotekun

In an interview, the state commander of Amotekun, Chief Adetunji Adeleye said: “The syndicate put on the internet a concept through which any interested unemployed Nigerian could get a job in the neighbouring countries.

“Whoever indicated interest was asked to pay N650, 000 with the promise to provide accommodation and commence work immediately in companies where they mine gold.

“What they do is to deceive the unsuspecting members of the society that there is greener pasture in a neighbouring country and once you pay N650,000 as entry fee, they will be enrolled.

“We infiltrated their ranks and found out that these fraudsters have already harvested over 100 young men to Cotonou and housed them in a building in Cotonou after collecting N650,000 from them.

“Besides, they opened offices in Nigeria and what they do is to sell forms saying that they belong to a particular company but we found out that these men are thieves.

“We are planning to collaborate with relevant security operatives to seek their assistance to bring 100 young men that have already been trapped outside the country to enable them unite with their families in Nigeria.”

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The state Amotekun commander, however, urged youths, especially unemployed graduates, to be wary of fraudsters, who want to take advantage of their situation.

How we fell for the bait — Victims

One of the victims, Midoye said he fell for the bait and travelled to Paraku, a town which is over five hours drive from Cotonou, the capital of Benin Republic.

“Immediately I entered the room and saw 15 young men on the floor, it became clear that there was no job as presented by the organisers of my trip.”

When asked how he got in contact with the fraudsters, he said: “I was linked up by another friend who had arrived at Benin Republic before me. He helped me to perfect my trip.

“I am sure he was acting on the instructions of the fraudster because he tricked me into transferring part of the required N650,000 a day before I embarked on the trip.

“But luckily for me, I was only able to transfer N200,000 to the syndicate out of the N650,000 charges due to the limit of bank transfer I could make in a day.“It was when I got to Benin Republic that I discovered that we were scammed.

“I later escaped from where I was asked to stay and found my way back to Nigeria.”


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