Court ruling to aid MultiChoice Nigeria's recovery of ₦7.9 billion in exchange fraud

·
April 8, 2024
·
2 min read
MultiChoice building
  • MulticChoice Nigeria reportedly lost ₦7.9 billion ($16.23 million in 2021) in a fraudulent foreign currency exchange transaction. According to a court document, MultiChoice would receive the stated amount plus interest.
  • According to Premium Times, the controversial transaction involved Akintunde Giwa, a currency exchange broker JNFX Limited, an English-incorporated currency exchange firm, and Ashay Mervyn, a JNFX representative and director at Frontier Financial Technologies. 
  • Stuart Isaacs, sitting as the Deputy Judge of the High Court in the Business and Property Courts of England and Wales, heard the judgement delivered remotely.

MultiChoice Nigeria reportedly hired Giwa and his companies to facilitate the exchange of naira for dollars for a MultiChoice Nigeria business. Giwa earned a commission when he assisted those looking to buy US dollars with Nigerian Naira.

Giwa then arranged with JNFX under 10 MultiChoice contracts to exchange naira for dollars. The contract began in early 2021, with the tenth contract ending in September 2021. Meanwhile, Mervyn, a representative of JNF, conducted Giwa’s primary dealings with the currency exchange firm.

Per the exchange process, MultiChoice Nigeria paid ₦7.9 billion to Giwa through bank accounts he controls, who in turn made payments to JNFX into bank accounts nominated by JNFX through Mervyn. 

The $16.2 million in dollar exchange was reportedly deposited into MultiChoice Africa's account at Standard Chartered Bank in London. Giwa clarified, though, that the business had not gotten the dollar payments.

Advertisement

Furthermore, in March 2024, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) declared Mervyn wanted for "obtaining money under false pretence and fraudulent conversion of funds."

While JNFX claimed that Mervyn lacked the authority to enter into the MultiChoice contract and act as its agent, Giwa contended that JNFX lacked realistic grounds to defend accusations of deceit against Mervyn and is liable for his deception.

JNFX also argued for a reduction in Giwa's claimed amount to $8.4 million due to unacknowledged dollar payments.

However, the court determined that JNFX's arguments were insufficient to disprove the allegations of deception. It dismissed JNFX's claims that Mervyn lacked authority, citing evidence of his representation as a senior figure within the company. 

The court granted Giwa summary judgment on his claims for ₦7.9 billion in damages and interest. However, the court ruled that the contractual claim against JNFX would go to trial, dismissing the application for summary judgment.

Be the smartest in the room

Join 30,000 subscribers who receive Techpoint Digest, a fun week-daily 5-minute roundup of happenings in African and global tech, directly in your inbox, hours before everyone else.
Digest Subscription

Give it a try, you can unsubscribe anytime. Privacy Policy.


Got a tip? Our journalists are ready to dig deeper. Please share your insights and information and help us uncover the stories that matter.

Subscribe To Techpoint Digest
Join thousands of subscribers to receive our fun week-daily 5-minute roundup of happenings in African and global tech, directly in your inbox, hours before everyone else.
This is A daily 5-minute roundup of happenings in African and global tech, sent directly to your email inbox, between 5 a.m. and 7 a.m (WAT) every week day! 
Digest Subscription

Give it a try, you can unsubscribe anytime. Privacy Policy.

Other Stories

43b, Emina Cres, Allen, Ikeja.

 Techpremier Media Limited. All rights reserved
magnifier