The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has raised an alarm over increasing cases of real estate and internet crime in Akwa Ibom State.
EFCC Zonal Commander, Uyo, Assistant Commander, Bawa Hamidu Saidu said the rising cases of real estate and internet crime was worrisome, adding that the commission was working to eliminate the problem.
Speaking on Thursday in Uyo during a media workshop for journalists on “Effective Reporting of Economic and Financial Crimes,” Bawa called on the media to focus its searchlight on the sector to tackle the sharp practices.
He said only the collective fight against financial and economic crime by all Nigerians will help to nip the situation in the bud.
“The rising incidences of real estate and internet-related cases have become worrisome. The real estate sector has been identified as a strong money laundering practice in Nigeria,” he said.
The Zonal Commander mentioned that the commission has both the backing of the law and qualified personnel to tackle financial and economic crimes in the country, adding that its efforts have so far helped reduce cybercrime which is the third highest in the world.
He revealed that some groups of persons have in the past impersonated EFCC officials to defraud unsuspecting members of the public of their money, and cautioned that people should be wary of such ‘EFCC officials’ trying to extort money from them.
He denied that EFCC officials demand money from members of the public from whatever guise and urged such persons to verify from their office the identity of such officials so as not to be deceived, adding that bail in the EFCC is free.
Mr. Tekan Ndifon, Head of Legal Department of EFCC, lamented hindrances and frustrations in prosecuting offenders. He said there should be some reforms to help in convicting suspects within a reasonable time frame.