Operatives of the Zonal Intervention Squad, ZIS, of the Zone 2 Police Command, Onikan, Lagos, have arrested a 47-year-old herbalist Abiodun David for allegedly defrauding a US-based Nigerian man of N4 million.
The victim identified simply as Kazeem, who works as a cab driver in the US, met the herbalist when he visited Nigeria 2016. During his brief stay, he reportedly received PIN numbers of a recharge card on his phone, only to be called by an unidentified person that the numbers were sent to his line in error.
By the time he sent the card back, the stranger called him back to inform him that he had discovered through spiritual means that Kazeem was undergoing difficulties that needed spiritual attention. The stranger was said to have booked an appointment with Kazeem, during which he was introduced to David. Sources close to the victim said:
“The herbalist took Kazeem to a shrine in Ogun State, where he performed the first trick of turning paper into money. The herbalist assured Kazeem that he will prepare concoction that would enable Kazeem to make progress.
“The first concoction, which the herbalist claimed was to make Kazeem spiritually formidable, was given to Kazeem to eat. But when he returned to the US, the herbalist kept demanding for more money from him, aside the one he paid while in Nigeria.
“At a point, Kazeem told him that he would not give him any money again because the charm did not work. The herbalist threatened that he would turn the concoction eaten by Kazeem into poison, which would kill him. Out of fear, he resumed giving him money and the herbalist warned him never to tell anyone about their conversation."
However, the victim sent a text to ZIS, which led to the arrest of the suspect, who hails from Kwara State.
Speaking with Vanguard while being paraded on Wednesday, at Zone 2, the suspect admitted to have collected money from the victim, but said it was not up to N4 million as claimed.
“I was arrested because I prepared charm of mercy and progress for a man based in USA. “I only charged him N320,000 which I collected in three instalments—N180,000, N80,000 and N60, 000. It was after I was arrested that I was told that I collected N4 million. Sometimes, the charms I prepare may work and at other times, it may not. I have been in this job for three years and this is the first time I would be brought to a police station. I was a barber before"