The Cyprus case
The operation was a success
The mark was a 55 year old widow
Her husband was a shipping magnate
6 months after her husband's death they sent her documents indicating that her husband had some money in Cyprus which she had to claim
She went to her lawyer
He verified the documents
The conversation intensified
It took months
They eventually got the document for the release of funds
They sent her the photocopies
They sent her their bill which was 20% of the settlement
They wanted their payment upfront
She sold three houses, acres of land
She raised the money
She contacted her lawyer
Moving millions of dollars is normal in the shipping business
Nobody raised an eyebrow
As soon as the transfer was done, she called them
They cut off the call
She called back several times, the number was 'busy'
Something was wrong!
Her lawyer was equally caught unawares
He called the bank to stop the transfer but the money had been moved
She had been duped!
She fired the lawyer, he had worked with her husband for years but how could he have verified the transaction as authentic?
Made her vulnerable!
She licked her wounds in pain
Her husband left her just enough to cater for her children the way he had always desired and she had squandered their inheritance like a prodigal wife
There was nothing to do but cut her coat according to her size. The children had to manage
Four years later, she was invited to a wedding ceremony.
A shipping magnate was marrying off his daughter and the shipping community was invited.
She flew to Dubai for the ceremony. The man had been extremely supportive since her calamity.
Jumeirah was the venue
On the wedding day she woke up quite late
The wedding had started
She found a seat at the back of the ballroom
Some young men came in later, they were obviously the groom's friends
They talked about his exploits as a big boy
She barely listened until they mentioned the Cyprus job
How he was a genius
How he came about his wealth
How he got the details of a widow's late husband's businesses from his Father-In-law's office and came up with a brilliant idea
How they got the necessary documents
How they got her lawyer to cooperate
Other jobs and victims too!
Their words kept hammering in her head as she returned home
That was the guy who swindled her
Her lawyer knew about it
But she had no evidence, no proof!
How would she not take even a stab at justice? How would she take this lying low?
Yet, there was nothing else to do but cry
She cried for three days
Her children panicked
They called her younger brother
Her younger brother listened to her
He was a member of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad
He promised her he would do something about it
She didn't believe him but she felt better
She stopped crying
One month later
As the newly married couple returned to Nigeria from their honeymoon
They came across a police roadblock
'Sir, Kindly open your boot' asked the police officer
He alighted and walked with the police officer to the boot of the car
They found a GUN! A GUN!
They were bundled to the police station
They didn't own a gun
What was happening?
They interrogated him
But their question was not about the gun
They claimed the lawyer had cooperated, fingered him for swindling the widow
His case was transferred to EFCC
His Father-in-law arrived
The state lawyer reasoned with him
He reasoned with his daughter
The son-in-law agreed to return the widow's money, he also turned state witness against the lawyer
The widow got her money back
The lawyer was sentenced to five years imprisonment
The marriage failed few weeks later