Out of frustration, a 35-year-old man, Banjo Omotosho, and his wife, Ebun, 29, allegedly forged a death certificate in a bid to defraud the Niger Insurance Company of the sum of N1.08m.
The couple has since been caught and arraigned before a Somolu Magistrate’s Court.
The alleged crime was said to have been detected by the insurance company, located on the Anthony end of the Ikorodu Expressway, Lagos.
It was learnt that Banjo had approached the company with his wife, Ebun, to take a life insurance policy under the names, Ojo Alabi Kingsley, and Ojo Motunrayo, respectively.
Banjo was said to have claimed that Ebun (Motunrayo) was his daughter and hence his next of kin.
The life insurance was said to have been taken in May, while a premium of N50, 000 was paid to the company.
However on August 4, Ebun (Motunrayo) allegedly approached the company and said her father had died in an accident, hoping to claim the benefit of N1, 080, 000 attached to the insurance policy.
It was learnt that Ebun allegedly presented a police report, and a forged death certificate signed by one Dr. Lawal of the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, dated May 29.
The medical report reportedly indicated that he died of hemorrhagic shock.
In addition, Ebun allegedly obtained an attending physician certificate that Alabi Ojo Kingsley had been under his (doctor’s) care for two years, which was co-signed by two law firms located in Gbagada area of the state.
Niger Insurance Company was said to be in the final stages of verification of claims when residents of the purported address where the ‘deceased’ lived denied knowing anyone by the name.
Omotosho and Ebun were then arrested after the fraud was uncovered.
They were arraigned on three counts of conspiracy, forgery and intent to defraud.
The charges read in part, “That you, Banjo Omotosho and Ebun Omotosho, on September 22 at about 10am at Niger Insurance Plc on Ikorodu Road, Anthony Village, fraudulently forged the death certificate of one Ojo Alabi Kingsley with intent to claim N1,080,000 on behalf of Ojo Motunrayo who is his next of kin.”
The police prosecutor, ASP Akinlabi Adegoke, said the offences were punishable under sections 361, 21 and 409 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, Nigeria, 2011.
They pleaded not guilty to the charges and elected summary trial.
Their defence counsel asked for their bail in liberal terms.
The magistrate, Mrs Bola Osunsanmi, admitted them to bail in the sum of N200,000 each, with two sureties in like sum.
However, the matter was later adjourned till December 10, 2014 for further hearing.tweet Follow @@metrolens1