Out of excitement, 29-year-old Abuchi Wisdom Nwachukwu told his best friend at work, Moses Moses that he received an N13.5 million money transfer alert from his brother based in South Africa. Unknown to him while Moses was celebrating with him, he was actually perfecting plans to steal the money; a plan, which later cost Nwachukwu his life. Both worked at a table water factory in Auchi, Edo State.
Two days later, Moses killed his friend while they were on night duty at the water factory, dumped his body in the nearby bush and hired hackers to hijack his bank account, and then diverted the money for his personal use. The fund was sent to Nwachukwu by his elder brother to complete the latter’s building project in Imo State.
How the bubble burst
All was well with Moses till detectives attached to the Police Intelligence Response Team (IRT) uncovered his evil act. The family of the victim who is a native of Amaraizu in Isiala Mbano area of Imo State raised the alarm when they waited for days without seeing him as he was scheduled to travel to the village. They contacted the director of the water factory who assured them that Nwachukwu left and could still be in transit. After 48 hours without seeing him, a case of missing person was reported at the police station while the search for him continued.
However, the stench from the decomposing body of Nwachukwu drew the attention of the community. His headless body was found but no one knew where his head was, who killed him or who he really was at that point. As such, the headless body was taken to the mortuary while police was alerted.
Acting on the petition by the Nwachukwu’s family, IRT detectives that were assigned to unravel the mystery were able to connect the missing dots through intelligence gathering. This led them to Moses who initially when he was arrested swore that he knew nothing about the disappearance of his friend Nwachukwu.
Confronted with hard facts, which showed that while his friend was missing, money was transferred from the late Nwachukwu’s account to his own, Moses then told the police that it was the money that he found in his late friend’s account that made him kill him. He led the detectives to the spot where Nwachukwu’s head was buried.
Unveiling the criminal gang
Moses also led the police to arrest four others who assisted him to withdraw money from late the Nwachukwu’s bank account. They are Jahswill Uche Ogbonnaya, Asuaha Tony Bright, Terence Okechukwu and Sikiru Yusuf. The suspects who are professional fraudsters based in Aba, Abia state confessed that they withdrew money from the account because they were told that the money belongs to a greedy Igbo businessman.
Chilling confession by the mastermind
Begging for mercy, Moses whose native name is Obedame claimed that he lost control as soon as he sighted the N13.5 million bank alert on his late friend’s phone. “I am from Ibie in Auchi local government area of Edo State and after graduating from Auchi Polytechnic where I read mechanical engineering, I worked in several places till I secured a job at a water production factory in Auchi. It was there that I met Nwachukwu and since he is a young man, we became friends. After work, we normally hang out and I do visit him anytime the opportunity presents itself.
“I knew that he has family members who are rich, especially his brother in South Africa who is building a house in the village. Few days before the incident, he called me and showed me a bank alert of N13.5 million. He said that his brother asked him to travel to the village and complete the house construction and also reserve some for the house opening party. I was happy for him but as soon as I got home the devil took over my senses. I became so jealous and all that was on my mind was what I can achieve with that amount of money. I just decided that I would take the money from him no matter what it costs.
“On January 8, 2020, which was the day that I killed him, we were both on night duty. He came with his bag with the hope that he would travel to their village in the morning of the following day. I was posted to the table water production section while he was posted to the sachet water section. On that day, the electricity current was too low to power the machines in both sections, so I was asked to start first.
“As soon as I was done, I entered the kitchen and took a knife and stick and moved over to his section. I stabbed him twice on his stomach, and he was still struggling with me. I then used the stick to knock him out.”
According to Moses, he quickly dragged the lifeless body into the nearby bush and dumped him there. “I waited till I was sure that he is dead. The water factory is close to a bush, so it was easy for me to lift him up and throw into the bush. I came back and cleaned the blood on the floor and also completed his assignment for the day. Management had already given him permission to travel, so they were not expecting to see him in the factory for some days. I took his bag and threw it into the forest too and collected all the valuables including his phone and ATM (Automated Teller Machine) cards. It was then that I noticed that he had even depleted the money to N8 million. The next day I used his ATM to withdraw money through POS (Point of Sale) machine. I also used his mobile application to transfer money out. I couldn’t move much because of the limit on his phone so I decided to contact one Sikiru who is a professional hacker in Aba.
I took a picture of the ATM card and sent to them. I told them that the ATM card belongs to a successful Igbo businessman who refused to settle his apprentice. Since I was with his phone, I was able to generate a new password that the hackers used to move about N2 million from the account. They gave me N200, 000 and said that it was all they can give me. I was annoyed and blocked them through my friend’s sim card. I generated another password and refused to send to them. While all this was happening, his family kept calling his phone number and I panicked. I flushed his phone sim card down the toilet in case police decides to track it. I went back to where I dumped his body and cut off his head. I took the head further into the bush and buried it. I did that because it might be easy to identify him if his body is found.”
Hunted by the dead
Before he was eventually arrested, the restless spirit of Nwachukwu no doubt hunted Moses for betraying his trust and murdering him for no just cause. According to Moses, “Nwachukwu liked me so much that he told me so much about himself and as such I know a lot about his family. Even after the incident, I travelled to Ore in Ondo to relax a bit before I returned to work. While at the hotel where I stayed in Ore, his sprit was hunting me up and down. I saw him severally crying and I will be shouting. Even the prostitute that I slept with ran away because she thought I am a ritualist. She heard me screaming and begging my friend to leave me alone. I later returned to work and was arrested while at work.”
How Nwachuckwu’s account was hacked
According to the other suspects who are suspected professional hackers, they never knew that the ATM card belonged to a dead man. They all alleged that they were meant to believe that the owner is a successful greedy businessman who refused to settle his apprentice.
Uche Ogbonnaya who created the website used to divert the money claimed that he was contracted by one Sikiru. “I am 29 and a native of Arochukwu in Abia State. I studied computer science at University of Uyo. Late last year, I was going through Facebook and discovered an application that can enable one to withdraw money and use it for a transaction. It is an online gateway used for payment of goods and services by individuals or companies. I registered and used my own money and discovered that it was working. I simply put my ATM number, the three digits at the back and my password. I was able to withdraw money from my account. I started the business and reached out to friends to let them know that if they need to buy stuffs I can easily withdraw money for them. This was why on the second week of January, Tony called me that they needed my help. He told me that the boss of a young man like myself after serving him for seven years refused to settle him. The plan was to withdraw the N8 million found in his account. I was only able to withdraw N1.1million before Moses whom I later learnt was the source of the ATM card blocked us off. He generated another password and we could not transfer money again. I never knew that he killed someone. I am so sorry, and this is the first time that I am doing an illegitimate job with that web page.”