Nigerian businessman in court for human trafficking and assault

A Nigerian businessman has appeared before an Accra Circuit Court on charges of trafficking four Nigerian young adults to Ghana to engage them in Internet fraud.

Tijani Husseni is being held on two counts of human trafficking.

Husseini and his accomplice, Hassan Great, also a businessman, have been jointly charged with conspiracy to commit crime and two counts of assault.

They have pleaded not guilty.

The court presided over by Mr Samuel Bright Acquah, has admitted them to bail in the sum of GH¢50,000 with two sureties each.

The court also ordered Husseini and Great to report to the police every Wednesday and hand over all their travelling documents to the court’s registry.

The matter was adjourned January 23, 2024.

The prosecution led Chief Inspector Dickson Atuunah said the complainant in the case is a 19-year-old, while the accused persons are internet fraudsters.

It said in July 2023, Husseni recruited the first victim, who was 17 years old, and second victim, who was 21 years old, from Nigeria to Ghana under the pretext of securing them jobs.

According to the prosecutor, the victims were met on arrival by Husseini, who snuck them into his house at Ayikuma.

The court heard that Husseini took their phones, wiped all information on them, and forced them to engage in internet fraud.

The prosecutor said Husseini subjected the victims to severe beatings when they failed to understand what he taught them.

Husseini, according to the prosecutor, only fed the victims once a day and forced them to drink only one sachet of water for 24 hours.

The prosecution said the victims were not permitted to go out or make phone calls, and they were also not allowed to use any private social media handles other than to deceive people, mostly Japanese, on Instagram.

The prosecutor said the victims worked 0830 hours to 1600 hours. and 2030 hours to 0430 hours the next day. 

In August 2023, Husseini recruited and transported another two victims aged 19 years and 22 years old from Nigeria to Ghana and meted out the same treatment to them. 

The prosecution said the second accused person, Great, who is a colleague fraudster from Nigeria arrived in Ghana in August 2023 and joined Husseini in the internet fraud business.

The victims were always cruelly beaten by Great and Husseini.

The prosecution said on October 6, 2023, one of the victims was transferred from Ayikuma by the accused persons to Mensah Bar to work for three weeks under another ‘manager’ called Element Moses, a Nigerian who is yet to be arrested.

The victim reported the case of assault at Ayikuma Police Station, which led to the rescue of the three other victims and the arrest of the accused persons.

The prosecution said matter and case dockets were later forwarded to the Anti Human Trafficking Unit, CID Headquarters for further investigation.

During the investigation, Husseini admitted that he recruited and transported the victims from Nigeria to Ghana. 

The prosecution said Husseini and Great also admitted they assaulted the victims anytime they breached the rules in the house but denied employing them for internet fraud.

Source: GNA

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