Chipata court substitutes indictment in Facebook fraud case

THE Chipata Magistrates’ Court has substituted the indictment in a case of Samuel Lungu who was charged with money laundering for allegedly defrauding Goodson Nkhuwa via Facebook while pretending to be Vice-President Inonge Wina.


According to the new indictment, Lungu is charged with two counts of obtaining money by false pretences and two counts of money laundering.


Particulars of the offence are that between January 1, 2017 and February 28, 2017, Lungu got K3,700 from Arnold Kabwe purporting that he would find him a job at the Immigration Department.


Particulars of count two are that on between February 15, 2017 and February 21, 2017, Lungu obtained K950 from Goodson Nkhuwa with intent to multiply it to make K45,000.


In the third count where he is charged with money laundering, Lungu is alleged to have engaged directly or indirectly into a transaction of over K3,000 between January 1, 2017 and February 28, 2017 and in the fourth count Lungu is alleged to have engaged into a transaction  of  K950 between February 15, 2017 and February 28, 2017.


Lungu pleaded not guilty to all the counts and Chipata resident magistrate Boniface Mwala adjourned the matter to August 2, 2017 for trial.


Lungu earlier had pleaded guilty to the charge and the state presented facts.


But when facts were read to him by senior public prosecutor Jeff Mwanabene, Lungu told the court that it all happened through Facebook.


He said someone lied to him to open the said account and that he did not know that they were just lying.


After getting Lungu’s explanation, magistrate Mwala entered an emended plea of not guilty.


Earlier in his facts, Mwanabene stated that on February 21, 2017, the Drug Enforcement Commission received a complaint from Nkhuwa of alleged Facebook fraud in which he was defrauded by some unknown people pretending to be Vice-President Inonge Wina, who told him to deposit K950 into account number 5463501100109 held at ZANACO Chipata Branch and that the money was deposited on February 20, 2017.


He stated that DEC instituted investigations into the matter, which led to the recovery of the customer information form bearing the names of Samuel Lungu and account number 5463501100109, a Xapit account, which was opened early January.


Mwanabene stated that DEC officers were also given Lungu’s bank statement where the complainant had deposited the money and that the same account was seized.


He stated that on February 22, 2017, K550 was deposited in the same account and Lungu tried to withdraw it but bank officials detained him and alerted DEC officers, leading to his arrest.

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