Ismaila Mustapha popularly known as Mompha, alleged cyber criminal on trial for almost $100 million

Nigeria’s anti-corruption agency is trying him for almost $100 million for alleged fraudulent internet activities he vehemently denies and his lawyers say he is innocent.


Before now, he was a sensation for many people who knew him. He displayed luxury cars, wore designer clothes and took pictures with stash of money.

Ismaila Mustapha, better known as Mompha, is being prosecuted on a 14-count charge, bordering on cyber fraud and money laundering to the tune of N33 billion (Thirty-three Billion Naira) by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) alongside his company, Ismalob Global Investments Limited.

EFCC says Mompha, who is the first defendant in the matter used the company to launder funds, part of which he used to acquire properties in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

His trial has been on for sometime and on Wednesday, January 15, 2020, the fourth prosecution witness, (PW4), Enu Matthew Obun, testified against Mompha at the Nigerian Federal High Court, Ikoyi, Lagos before Justice Abdullahi M. Liman.

Obun said the suspected internet fraudster allegedly ran an illegal bureau de change with his company.

Led in evidence by prosecution counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, the witness, a compliance officer with the Special Control Unit Against Money Laundering (SCUML), of the EFCC, told the court that on November 15, 2019, the Commission requested from SCUML the regulation and compliance status of the company and that “upon inspection, it was discovered that Ismalob is not registered with the SCUML.”

He further stated that “From the database search in the office, there is no information on Ismalob Global Investment Limited and all the transactions that were done in the company’s account between December 14, 2015 and January 25, 2018 are not on SCUML’s record.”

The EFCC letter of request and the response from SCUML were admitted in evidence by the court.

Justice Liman adjourned the matter until February 26, 2020 for continuation of trial.

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Simon Ateba is Chief White House Correspondent for Today News Africa. Simon covers President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, the U.S. government, the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions in Washington D.C. and New York City.

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